Tuesday’s (4/7) Agence France Presse reports from Cairo, “Israeli conductor Daniel Barenboim will hold a concert in Egypt on April 16, two months after a first appearance was cancelled due to the Gaza conflict, angering those who oppose normalisation with Israel. The Argentinian-born conductor was due to give a concert in January, but it was cancelled due to Israel’s deadly 22-day military onslaught of Gaza that ended on January 18. The concert, Barenboim’s first in Egypt, has ruffled feathers in intellectual circles, with music critic Amgad Mustafa describing the visit as ‘sneaky normalisation’ with Israel. But Egypt’s culture minister was quick to defend Barenboim’s visit. … Barenboim, 66, has been vocal in his opposition to Israeli policies in Gaza and Israel’s occupation of the West Bank. In 1999, he founded the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra with late Palestinian intellectual Edward Said who died in 2003.”

Posted April 8, 2009