The Community Creative Fellowship is making its debut in a time where art is most desperately needed. After an excruciatingly difficult year, we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, yet we wear the scars of 2020 on our skin. We know we won’t be able to simply pick up where we left off. We’re going to have to reassess what’s important to us, and rediscover our relationship with our community. In this challenging, narrow place, we need music, art, dance and creativity to fully live in our human experience, to recognize the sadness and fear inside of us and emerge from the darkness with spaciousness and love. 

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I’m so honored that the Community Creative Fellowship is giving me the opportunity to be a part of this delicate transition. Through the structure of the fellowship, I will engage my community in a series of online workshops that aim to recognize and validate the longing we each have for love, comfort, belonging and a sense of home.

My workshops will offer both Jewish and non-Jewish groups in Boston an intentional space for storytelling, reflection and creation. We will recall and invoke our personal, familial and ancestral stories to explore what it means to feel lost and at home, alone and connected, rejected and loved. I hope these workshops will illuminate the common thread of humanity that connects us and celebrate the beautiful differences that make us who we are. The experiences, stories and words shared at the workshops will serve as the basis for my final musical offering, which, I hope, will be a source of healing and inspiration as we emerge into this new world. 

As a Jew of both Iraqi and Ashkenazi heritage, I am especially excited to connect with members of our community that haven’t always felt accepted or heard. In particular, I am excited to raise up the voices of Mizrahi, Sephardi, indigenous, Arab and Black folx in our community. The lived and ancestral experiences of these communities, along with the partnership of artist collaborators from Boston and beyond, will be a gift that inspires my creativity. And the music we create together will, in turn, be a gift back to the community that inspired it. Through this process of creating new music, I hope to help us move into and beyond 2021 with a renewed sense of who we are, and hopefully, a deeper level of acceptance and interconnectedness that will sustain us and nurture us into the future.

The Community Creative Fellowship is powered by CJP and JArts. To learn more about the fellowship, click here.