The Barenboim-Said Center For Music was established in 2003 by late Palestinian intellectual and scholar, Edward Said, and the renowned pianist and conductor, Daniel Barenboim. The founders believed that music enhances human life and, through the creation of the BSCFM, they aimed to make classical music education accessible to Palestinian children and young adults. Through its activities at the Music Center in Ramallah, the BSCFM focuses on Palestinian children and young adults regardless of their social or economic background and offers the highest level of education. The foundation has an eight-year curriculum that enables students to continue classical music studies at a higher level. The Barenboim-Said Center For Music offers the following types of
classes and performance opportunities:
• Individual instrumental lessons in a wide range of instruments including violin, viola, cello, piano, clarinet, flute, oboe, bassoon and trumpet. All instrumental students attend weekly music theory and music history classes as well.
• Early music education and music appreciation in local schools
• Singing lessons and choir practice
• Childrens orchestra and chamber music workshops
• The chance to perform in concerts at the Music Center and in the surrounding area
• Talented students are automatically enrolled in the BSCFM “Young Talents” concert series which takes place in Ramallah
• Opportunities to participate in international music programs, summer camps and other exchange programs with young European and other international musicians
Filasteen Young Musicians Orchestra offers the opportunity for any young Palestinian musician to develop their skills as member of an orchestra with the best conductors and professional musicians as well as perform internationally.
The Barenboim-Said Center for Music partners with the Palestinian Medical Relief Society.
The BSFM seeks to enrich the cultural life in Palestine through the organization of music appreciation concerts.
In addition to frequent concerts performed by its highly-qualified teachers, world-renowned musicians are invited to perform in Ramallah.
Edward Said, the late Palestinian scholar and public intellectual, was also an accomplished pianist and music critic. He believed that music education is essential for the development of the intellect. He advocated teaching music on a wide scale in Palestine and devoted the last decade of his life in helping the National Conservatory of Music introduce a higher level of music education in Palestine. This was achieved with the help of Edward’s friend, the conductor and pianist Daniel Barenboim. Barenboim quickly and efficiently instituted a program where music teachers from Europe were sent to teach at the National Conservatory of Music.
In 2002, the Regional Government of Andalucia (also known as JUNTA) invited Said and Barenboim to Sevilla, Spain to conduct a musical workshop. A couple of years later, the Fundación Barenboim-Said was established in Andalucia. The process for establishing the foundation began in 2003 and was finalized a few months after Said’s passing. The purpose of this newly established foundation was to fund the music education programs Said and Barenboim envisioned and instituted. The Regional Government of Andalucia continues to support and fund our music education programs in Palestine.
From 2003 - 2005 the Barenboim-Said Foundation partnered with the National Conservatory and supported their educational effort. Soon after, The Foundation opened the Barenboim-Said Music Center in Ramallah and shifted its resources from the National Conservatory to its own Center. In addition the Foundation has partnered with and supported the Al Kamandjati Institution throughout the years 2005 – 2011. The Barenboim-Said Foundation also contributed in the reconstruction of The Qattan Music School in Gaza (currently a branch of the Edward Said National Conservatory), after it was heavily destroyed by the massive Israeli assault on Gaza in 2008-2009.