It’s autumn again, the beginning of the fall term and little fingers will be busy in the Holy Land practicing for the 10th Tavasani Piano Competition, January 2009, at the Magnificat Institute of Music in Jerusalem.
One of the cornerstones of their fundraising is a clever little phrase, “we don’t ask nationality (when it comes to admitting students or staff)”. Those with Jewish-sounding names are especially welcome, since this furthers the Custody’s fiction that this school of theirs is a “progetto di pace“.
But dear readers, and anyone with an ounce of intelligence would be stupefied that not only do they ask the nationality of the competitors but PROOF they are “Palestinian”.* http://www.custodia.org/magnificat/Piano%20Competition/Index%20competition.html
The Fifth Edition of the “Rome for Jerusalem” Prize (“Roma per Gerusalemme”) will be offered again for 12 prizes in all. These are first and second level prizes in three categories x 2 for the two groups. 12,000 Israeli Sheqels will be divided up, half to the Palestinians, in other words 6000 shekels for their group and 6000 for the “rest of the world”. Any alleged Jew studying in their school, however, is barred from the main competition–pure, ugly discrimination that wasn’t even tried in the Beijing Olympics.
As mentioned in a previous article here about last year’s competition**, a certain group is protected from having to compete with those tedious foreigners (even if they live across the street) and are guaranteed six money prizes (unless their playing is so bad that perhaps some of them might be rescinded).
This is not only a disgrace but an insult to anyone’s intelligence. About a year and a half ago members from this Institute went to Rome for a self-promotional peace circus, blabbing about “making peace through music”, but evidence shown here is that they are doing the OPPOSITE, in other words, encouraging separation by this competition. This, I humbly submit, is what the Ufficio di Pace was doing previously. Like the phoenix, public money seems to be an ever-renewable commodity, especially if it is earmarked for peace. But there is a good saying about trying to convince others of a spurious product:
“You can fool the some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”
A good translation into Italian might be useful.
* Someone should inform those self-righteous and self-congratulatory Franciscans, the Custodians of the Holy Land, whose ignorance of peacemaking and music (the latter, judging by the weird unmusical scribblings on their website) must be in direct proportion to their money collecting skills, that the “Artur Rubinstein Piano Competition” in Tel Aviv does not discriminate in the manner above. Other Israeli music competitions for young people like the “Keren-Sharett” welcome Jews and Arabs alike.
As one US Senator described the current proposal to bail out the banks, their so-called musical peace initiatives that here includes the Comune di Roma are only “cow patties with marshmallows on top“.