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Creative Alliance Receives Prestigious Award from the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art
Creative Alliance is one of 11 non-profit organizations to receive a highly competitive grant from the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art’s (DFFIA)’S Building Bridges 2016-2017 Program, whose mission is to advance relationships, increase understanding and reduce bias between Muslim and non-Muslim communities.
Creative Alliance has received $145,000 for a new multi-year program that brings renowned Muslim women performers from around the globe to Baltimore for multiple days of community engagement, conversation, and performance. Each of these performing artists comes with a distinct set of personal experiences from different places, societies, and cultural traditions to celebrate the complexity of Muslim women today.
Over the course of 2017 and 2018 Creative Alliance presents, Nisa’a/Women: Muslim Cultural Identity-Six Women on Stage and in Conversation. Baltimore students and audiences will have the opportunity to engage with and learn from six female artists with roots in Muslim communities in North and East Africa, the Middle East, and the United States. Each artist will spend a minimum of three full days in Baltimore visiting schools, participating in public conversations, collaborating with Baltimore artists, and performing at the Creative Alliance for an event open to the public. The goal of these extended engagements is to provide a space for dialogue and increase understanding between these Muslim artists and Baltimore communities.
“The Creative Alliance is extremely grateful to the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art for its support and this unique opportunity, which will allow Creative Alliance to amplify the voices, leadership, and vision of Muslim women artists, and raise awareness of appreciation for their culture through art,” said Margaret Footner, Executive Director of the Creative Alliance.
The Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art (DFFIA)’S Building Bridges grant will enable the Creative Alliance to feature female Muslim and local artists in joint performances and discussions held in high schools, colleges, and universities to explore topics such as structural racism and the historic roots of inequality in Baltimore and encourage audiences to examine their own personal biases against Muslims. The Muslim women performers will lead workshops and share the historical and cultural origin of their art with non-Muslim women and girls in these immersive events.
FRI OCT 6, 2017
Maimouna Youssef aka Mumu Fresh w/ Joy Postell
A practicing Muslim, born in Baltimore and raised in DC, R&B singer Maimouna Youssef aka Mumu Fresh is experiencing an explosion of attention thanks to an NPR Tiny Desk Concert that has so far garnered over 440k views and counting. More Info & Tix
FRI OCT 6, 2017
Arooj Aftab w/ Zomes
Arooj Aftab, a young neo-Sufi singer originally from Pakistan, combines the Sufi tradition by incorporating an open-minded approach to sonic matter in a style reminiscent of improvisational jazz. Arooj and her band collaborates with Zomes, a Baltimore electronic experimental music duo. More Info
FRI FEB 16, 2018
Alsarah & The Nubatones w/ J Pope & The Hearnow
Alsarah is a Sudanese-born singer, songwriter, and ethnomusicologist. Her musical approach is enchanting and unique, informed by the hypnotic rhythms and melodies of her birthplace but not beholden to them. Alsarah embraces Sundanese tradition with the knowledge that all cultural traditions are constantly evolving based on the nature of creativity and exposure to other cultures. More Info
FRI APR 13, 2018
Comedy: Zainab Johnson
Zainab Johnson, a stand-up comedian, and actress is quickly being propelled as one of the most unique and engaging performers on stage and screen. Zainab’s comedy is based on her unique point-of-view, which was shaped growing up in Harlem as one of thirteen siblings in a Muslim family. More Info
FRI SEP 28, 2018
Imagined hybrids from lost empires, the unexpected sounds of Sandaraa (“song” in Pashto) show how Eastern Europe, the Indus Civilization, and Central Asia connect. The melismatic might of modal music and the ringing grit of mountain songs, the rollicking trance beats, and restrained emotional intensity, have an eerie resonance, despite surface differences. More Info
About the Building Bridges Program
The Building Bridges Program is the grant-making arm of the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art (DDFIA), which is an extension of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF). Based in New York, the program supports national efforts to advance relationships, increase understanding, and reduce bias between Muslim and non-Muslim communities. For more information, please visit www.ddcf.org/what-we-fund/building-bridges.