Every week, lovers of music, dance, art, food and everything in between visit a different culture through Circle World Arts. Every week, an artist from a different country shares their expertise in hands-on workshops at the Lebanese American University.
On Friday February 21, attendees were transported to the Arab world by the beats of Lebanese musician, Gilbert Mansour. Mansour is a graduate of Berklee College of Music and has performed with numerous Middle Eastern and international artists. For the workshop, he had many rhythms and instruments tailored to participants coming from different cultural backgrounds, skill levels, and ages.
Circle World Arts was founded in 2017 by Hadi and Mohamad Eldebek, Lebanese artists themselves. This year, a new partnership with the Lebanese American University in New York was introduced to bring the workshop series to full-force. From American comics to Azerbaijani music and Chinese poetry, Eldebeks seek to explore all sorts of arts from around the world.
Hadi Eldebek, who moved to New York from Lebanon for college, said the initiative reflects the spirit of the city and his conception of himself.
“I have evolved my own identity based on the different cultures I’ve been interacting with,” he said. As much as he appreciates and cherishes his Lebanese upbringing, he said his move to the city and exposure to a diverse world made him a “ hybrid of multiculturalism.”
Yara El Murr is a Fulbright biologist-turned-journalist at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. Gus Fisher is a video journalist at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.Veerle Bos is a radio and video journalist from the School of Journalism in Utrecht, Netherlands.
“A Portrait of New York” is an assignment for documentary film students at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism @CUNY and Dutch students visiting from Utrecht University of Applied Sciences, the Netherlands to produce a compelling, character based, visual vignette. The class is co-taught by Newmark-J Professors Bob Sacha, Yoruba Richen and Utrecht Professors Brian Maston and Arjan Kroon.