The National Youth Orchestra of Iraq is a unique project set up by a 17-year old Iraqi musician, Zuhal Sultan in 2008. Despite all of the music tutors fleeing Iraq during the war, this brave young musician decided to set up a National Orchestra against much adversity, recruiting and auditioning musicians from across Iraq using YouTube. The orchestra has grown from strength to strength over the past few years and Zuhal Sultan is now bringing her remarkable collection of musicians to Scotland this summer for their first ever performances in Britain.
The orchestra has received funding from the Scottish Government to allow them to play the Edinburgh Fringe at Greyfriars Kirk on August 26 as well as The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland on August 25 and London’s Elizabeth Hall on August 28.
Despite receiving funding from the British Council and the Scottish Government, The National Youth Orchestra of Iraq are still short on the funding needed to complete the project. To help the orchestra achieve their goal of playing three big concerts in Britain this summer you can donate by visiting – www.nyoiraq.com.
Lloyd Anderson, the director of the British Council in Scotland said, “You can’t overstate the importance of a project like this. For these young people – who have lived through the horrors of recent Iraqi history – this is a chance to show the world how cultural expression can survive and thrive with determination and the right encouragement.”