Beit Almusica, a non-profit organization (NGO) was established in 1999 by a group of young artists and musicians in the city of Shafa'amr, Israel. Our mission is to promote cultural rights of the Palestinian minority in Israel, to enrich society through the development of musical environments, to open prospects for artists, and to interact musically with other cultures. Beit Almusica nurtures a sense of self-identity through music education as a positive agent of change mainly for the Palestinian community. Our goals are:
• Create and reinforce professional musical frameworks and infrastructure;
• Preserve and promote the culture and heritage of Arab and oriental music;
• Develop musical culture and increase Palestinian community’s awareness of music appreciation and empower them to explore a variety of musical genres;
• Open opportunities for the most marginalized to have access to professional music education.
We live in a reality where music education, cultural activities and art are regarded as a form of extravagance for a number of reasons, starting with the fact that localities hardly ever allocate budgets to integrate cultural aspects in the lives of the inhabitants. Furthermore, music and art are not taught in schools and are regarded by many as an expensive past time activity that many cannot afford through extracurricular costly activities. The need for quality music education as well as creative education resources is on the rise and is crucial mainly for the Palestinian community in Israel. Palestinian citizens have suffered from the absence of professional musical frameworks and infrastructure, which has hindered their cultural growth and the development of music as a professional art. This prevents the society from flourishing as music addresses one’s culture, one’s society, and one’s individuality. Music, indeed is very much tied to society and what a person experiences from that society. Palestinians in Israel face discrimination, inequality and exclusion. There is an acute lack of meaningful after-school activities for Palestinian children and youth in Israel. They spend many hours in front of the TV, playing with the computer, or going around at the streets, being exposed to serious dangers. All Arab villages and towns in Israel lack adequate and/or sufficient playgrounds, safe streets, cultural centers, libraries, theaters, cinema, etc.
Beit Almusica was established to try and provide an adequate answer to these pressing needs. Beit Almusica operates three complementary programs: the Conservatory, the Community Outreach Program and the Festival program reaching more than 6,500 beneficiaries per year, including children and youth who otherwise cannot afford a musical education and would have remained sidelined.