Cellist plays at Baghdad car bomb site
search
The sound of solaceThe sound of solace

Cellist plays at Baghdad car bomb site

Former Iraqi symphony orchestra director brings music to area where 10 people died in terror attack hours earlier

An Iraqi cellist performed an impromptu concert on the site of a terrorist attack in Baghdad, hours after a car bomb killed ten people there.

Karim Wasfi, former director of the Iraqi symphony orchestra, began playing his cello for shaken residents in the upscale Mansour District in western Baghdad following a deadly terrorist attack Tuesday, according to a Thursday report by the Telegraph.

News of the cellist’s impromptu concert spread rapidly, and clips of Wasfi performing against the backdrop of a bombed out café were uploaded to the Internet.

“People were united against the tragedy. There was sincerity and kindness, tears and hugs,” Wasfi said of the passersby who stopped to watch him perform a self-written piece titled “Baghdad Mourning.”

The attack was one of several in Baghdad this week, as Iraq grapples with a jihadist insurgency, civil strife and large-scale sectarian violence. Medical personnel estimate that 19 people were killed and several dozen injured in a spate of bombings on Tuesday alone.

Terrorists from the Islamic State were believed to be behind the attack in Mansour.

“I play to show life is worth living – I can’t beat the bombs with my cello, but I can bring respect for the dead,” Wasfi later told the BBC.

Wasfi runs a music academy called the Karim Wasfi Center for Music & Creativity and often gives lectures and plays music at orphanages.

“The message was that this was a new day – a day not for death, but for hope… My message as an artist, conductor [and] cellist is that when things are abnormal, we make things normal. We make things worth living for.”

Join us!
A message from the Editor of Times of Israel
David Horovitz

The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.

We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.

Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.

Become a member of The Times of Israel Community
read more:
comments