Zaid Jabri + Monika Weiss

 

World Premiere [ONLINE] 

Film by artist Monika Weiss Lament for Rachel Corrie (2021) 

and 

Music by composer Zaid Jabri Beati Pacifici | In Memoriam Rachel Corrie (2010) recorded in 2021

Rachel Corrie was a peace activist who died while trying to prevent the demolition of a home in Gaza.

In Memoriam Rachel Corrie by composer Zaid Jabri Beati Pacifici for voice and piano [6:15 min.], performed by Palestinian musicians—soprano Dima Bawab and pianist Ghadeer Abaido, is presented with 
the silent film by Monika Weiss Lament for Rachel
Corrie
(2021), [color, silent, 6:15 min.], performed
by Ruth Blair Moyers filmed and choreographed by Weiss in her New York studio.

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Artist Monika Weiss watches the projection of her work Two Laments (19 Cantos) 2015-2020, a series of short films and sound compositions, in which Weiss choreographed women from India and around the world to perform gestures of silent lament in memory of Jyoti Singh. The series is devoted to victims of gender and colonial violence globally--the theme that Weiss has been exploring over the years. Performer: Vinita Dasgupta.

"In 2010, a Palestinian soprano asked me to write a piece for soprano and piano. At the time, I was reading a lot about the situation of the Palestinian people, and had just learned about Rachel Corrie. Corrie was a peace activist who died while trying to prevent the demolition of a home in Gaza. I was touched by the story of a young woman who had left her own home to take up the cause of dispossessed people, and who met such a tragic death. One evening, as some verses from the Beatitudes, “Beati pacifici,” were ringing in my mind, I had my hand on the piano playing F#, G#, A, echoing the rhythm of those syllables. That became the basis the six-minutes song, which I wrote that very night. The piece was performed in many venues on both sides of the Atlantic. This recording was made by the Palestinian pianist Ghadeer Abaido, and the Paris-based Palestinian soprano Dima Bawab."
- Zaid Jabri

Beati pacifici, quoniam filii Dei vocabantur.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Matthew 5:9

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"I first heard the music of Zaid Jabri in 2017 when I attended MATA’s festival New Music from the Islamic World, where his Beati pacifici was performed. I was deeply moved by every note of this piece. At the time I was already working on a public project devoted to victims of violence, both colonial and gender-based, which later became the monument/anti-monument, Nirbhaya. It struck me that both Jyoti Singh (aka ‘Nirbhaya’) and Rachel Corrie were 23 at the time of their killing. I felt this piece so strongly that I reached out to Zaid in hopes we might work together one day. Fast forward, earlier this year Zaid told me he was planning a new release of the piece and asked if I wanted to create a silent film as a counterpoint to accompany the music. Suddenly, I knew exactly what the film would be. I saw the color of red, but not just the red of blood. I imagined blossoming flowers growing out of the tortured body and out of the site of her gruesome killing. In Lament for Rachel Corrie (2021) I filmed and choreographed performer Ruth Blair Moyers to create a sense of slow, horizontal and silent lament. I montaged the film to create a sense of the body as if forever suspended outside of time and space.  In the film the lamenter’s red scarf blossoms and blooms, in spite of the horror. In memory of Rachel Corrie."

- Monika Weiss

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Zaid Jabri is an award-winning composer based in Kraków, Poland. Born in Damascus, he was drawn to music from an early age. After studying violin with Riyad Sukar in Damascus, he entered the Academy of Music in Kraków, where he completed his master's degree under the supervision of Zbigniew Bujarski, and his doctorate under the directorship of Krzysztof Penderecki. Jabri's background has alerted him to the dense histories of shared and reworked harmonic and instrumental strategies across the East/West divide. His music has been performed throughout Europe, North America, and the Middle East. zaidjabri.com

Monika Weiss is prominent Polish-American artist based in New York and St. Louis. Born in Warsaw, Poland the artist trained as a pianist before studying painting at the Warsaw’s Academy of Fine Arts. Exhibited worldwide her transdisciplinary practice incorporates slow movement and gestures of lament performed by herself and other women, whom she choreographs for her films, forming a profoundly affective response to history and oscillating, as Mark McDonald (The Metropolitan Museum of Art) noted, “between proposal and presence, the allusive and the tangible”. Forthcoming at the Center of Polish Sculpture in Orońsko is Weiss’ permanent outdoor memorial dedicated to victims of everyday violence. monikaweiss.net