Re-imagining Community: Cross Cultural Collaboration in the Age of Physical Distancing


The Arts Center at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) will present a live streamed cross-cultural exchange event titled “Re-imagining Community: Cross-Cultural Collaboration in the Age of Physical Distancing” this Saturday, April 18, 2020 at 8pm (EMT+4).  The virtual event, a partnership with the Embassy of the United States in the United Arab Emirates, will bring together two internationally recognized musicians to discuss how to create art and re-imagine community through technology despite physical distances.

Moderated by Executive Artistic Director of The Arts Center at NYUAD Bill Bragin, this live online conversation with Grammy-nominated American jazz musician John Beasley and acclaimed Emirati classical composer Ihab Darwish will also include the premiere of a new musical collaboration they are creating together despite being so far apart. Audiences are invited to interact with Beasley and Darwish in real-time via a Facebook live feed.

Bill Bragin commented, “A concert by the masterful pianist John Beasley’s MONK’estra Quartet, sponsored by the US Embassy, was the last live in-person event presented by The Arts Center at the beginning of March, before physical distancing became the standard. As part of his first visit to the UAE, Beasley met with the prominent Emirati pianist and composer Ihab Darwish. We’re thrilled to be able to build on that in-person meeting to continue the partnership with the US Embassy as part of our Off the Stage series, which gives audiences a chance to learn more about the artistic process. In this case, so many of the themes that are important to The Arts Center will come to the front, such as the importance of cross-cultural collaboration and how technology can be used as a tool in artistic creation.”

Lauren Willy, US Embassy Cultural Attaché said, “The US Embassy is thrilled to be working again with The Arts Center at NYUAD to support Ihab and John in their collaboration, after we first introduced them in March. During these difficult times, we’re proud to support cross-cultural partnerships that people can enjoy from the safety of their homes. Collaborations like this create opportunities for innovation and invention while also deepening the US-UAE bilateral relationship.”

This event is presented in partnership with the Embassy of the United States in the United Arab Emirates and The Arts Center at NYUAD as part of the Off The Stage series.


Join the community via Facebook Live @NYUADArtsCenter

The Arts Center at NYUAD is a performing arts center that presents distinguished professional artists from around the world alongside student, faculty, and community productions. For more information, please visit the website. Follow @NYUADArtsCenter on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


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