Daniel Pearl was a respected journalist, who also played the violin and died on the job shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks. He was in Pakistan to do his job, to report the truth, when he was abducted and later beheaded by terrorists.
Pearl’s friends and family started the Daniel Pearl foundation, which in turn started the Daniel Pearl World Music Days initiative, which runs this year from October 1 to October 30 and is dedicated to calling for tolerance and a commitment to our common humanity.
PRNewswire reports that this year’s 11th World Music Days marks its 10th anniversary. In 2011, more than 2,000 World Music Days’ events took place in more than 80 countries. The honorary World Music Days committee includes household names like Sir Elton John, Barbara Streisand, and Yo-Yo Ma among others.
The Daniel Pearl Foundation website describes the founding of World Music Days.
“On February 22, 2002, the day after the world learned that kidnapped Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl had been brutally murdered by his captors in Pakistan, conductor George Pehlivanian, Danny’s neighbor and friend from Paris, was scheduled to lead the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra as a guest conductor. Deeply troubled by the news, he was initially reluctant to perform; however, he decided to go ahead with his concert (which he proudly dedicated to Danny), rather than give in to the despair wrought by the evil inflicted on Danny.”
“As the orchestra played Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5, I finally understood the triumph of hope over despair,” said Pehlivanian. It was an emotional and exultant concert, ending with 15 minutes of sustained applause.”
The first Daniel Pearl World Music Days involved just 123 concerts in 15 countries.