Ramzi Auredwan, the founder: "music, an expression against the Israeli violence."
Ramzi was born in 1979 in Bethlehem. He spent his childhood and youth in the refugee camp of Al-Amari in Ramallah, where his grandparents went after they were expelled from their house in Naani in 1948 (in the suburbs of Ramla, Palestine). More Se Repérer
In 1987, at the age of eight, during an Israeli military operation, his best friend was killed. Ramzi took part in the first Intifada - "uprising" in Arabic, often called "war of stones" - that took place between 1987 and 1992. More.
As an experienced street combatant on the make, Ramzi seemed destined for an Israeli prison or a Palestinian martyr's poster. But fate decided otherwise.
At seventeen, he was invited, by chance, to a music workshop in the Popular Art Center, in Al Bireh, directed by Mohammad Fadel, a Palestinian from Jordan.
He fell in love with music and started to learn the viola.
After studying for one year at the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music (ESNCM), and after attending a summer workshop in the United States - in the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music of New Hampshire - he entered the Conservatoire National de Region d'Angers in 1998, thanks to a grant from the French government. In 2005, he was awarded the "DEM" gold medal for viola, chamber music and music theory. He learned to play the piano and he played in the orchestra as well.
He created the ensemble Dal'Ouna in 2000. More. Dal'Ouna's music symbolizes the link between East and West, where the twain meet, for it emerges from an encounter between Palestine and France, from the melting of pure traditional Middle-Eastern songs with mixed jazzy compositions, played on Western classical musical instruments (viola, violin, clarinet, flute, guitar, piano), and traditional Eastern instruments (bouzouk, oud, darbouka, bendir, etc.).
Al Kamandjâti Association ("the violinist" in Arabic) was formed in October 2002 by a small group of Angevin activists, members of the AFPS, on the initiative of Ramzi, who was nominated as first president of the association.
The first General Assembly of the Al Kamandjâti Association took place on the 26th of March, 2004 in Angers : Ramzi Aburedwan (President of the Association), Karim Rissouli (Vice-president), Yamma Amraoui (Secretary), Marie Albert (Vice-secretary), Marie-Paule Bocher (Treasurer), Catherine Bocher (Vice-treasurer), Jocelyne Benchamakh, Chantal Caure, Christophe Couvreur, Anthony Fardeau, Catherine Ferrari, Elsa Ferrari, Gwenael Gicquel, Yacine Laghrour, Jean-Noël Loget, Hélène Oudjani, and Antoine Roland.
In Italy, Nicola Perugini and Marco Dinoi put a whole network of practical support for the Al Kamandjâti Association into place, including members of the Mozart Orchestra of Bologna as directed by Claudio Abado, the Sienna Municipality, the Region of Puglia and the city of Bari. These Italian partners committed themselves to collecting instruments, to sending music teachers and stringed-instruments makers to Palestine, to sending Palestinian makers in Italy to organize collaborations and, more recently, to creating an opera called "Al Kamandjâti Show" in Rome. This opera, by Guido Barbieri and Oscar Pizzo, was coproduced by the Foundation Musica per Roma in Italy and the Oslo Ultima Festival, in Norway.
In September 2004, another association also called Al Kamandjâti was created, under Palestinian law, in Ramallah, with Ramzi as President.
The Association currently teaches music to around 450 Palestinian students in places such as the refugee camps Al Amari, Jalazon, Qalandiah and Qaddura, the village of Deir Ghassana, the old cities of Ramallah and Jenin and in Tulkarem.
Since 2005, Al Kamandjâti, with ten French musicians, has organized annual music workshops in the Palestinian refugee camps of Lebanon. Those workshops, similar to those organized in Palestine, give many children the opportunity to discover music.
Since October 2008, Al Kamandjâti is teaching music to 60 students in two Palestinian refugee camps: Bourj el Barajneh and Shatilla.