Middle Tennessee comes together for 'Violins of Hope'

Sep 14, 2017

Credit violinsofhopenashville.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  More than two-dozen local organizations are partnering to bring to the mid-state a set of musical instruments with links to the Holocaust.

The violins were originally owned by European Jews sent to Nazi concentration camps during World War Two. While the instruments survived, many of their musician owners did not.

Known collectively now as the “Violins of Hope” the restored instruments will be used early next year in performances by the Nashville Ballet and the Nashville Symphony. The orchestra has commissioned a new symphony to be debuted using the instruments.

When not in use, the instruments will be on display at the Nashville Library.

Mark Freedman heads the Jewish Federation of Middle Tennessee. He traveled to Israel recently to visit with the instrument maker who is restoring the violins.

“Each one has a story and he really holds them and explains about them as if they were children…as if they were his own children.”

When WMOT asked Mr. Freedman if he thought having the instruments in Nashville was especially poignant, given the controversy surrounding the white supremacist and neo-Nazi protests in Charlottesville this past summer, he responded that the struggle against injustice and inequality never ends.

“We have the opportunity and the privilege to have these violins come, and their message of hope is one of unity; that we need to learn to live together.”

Would you like to learn more about Violins of Hope events schedule in Nashville?

Use the link below to listen to an interview with Nashville Symphony CEO Steve Brosvik about Violins of Hope.