A celebration was held on the occasion of the 79th Independence Day, under the patronage of the caretaker Prime Minister and in the presence of Najib Mikati, and at the invitation of the Minister of Culture, Judge Muhammad Wissam Al-Mortada, and the President of the National Conservatory, Dr. Heba Al-Qawas. A crowd of Lebanese gathered at the UNESCO Palace, to affirm the will to persevere through music and culture.
The celebration was attended by Mikati, Al-Mortada, and Al-Qawas, political, ministerial and parliamentary figures, diplomats, ambassadors from several Arab and Western countries, judicial figures, general managers, governors, mayors, media figures, journalists, cultural and artistic figures, and others.
A statement from the Conservatory pointed out, “The President of the National Higher Institute of Music, Dr. Heba Al-Kawas, did not want the anniversary of Lebanon’s independence to pass without celebrating it as befits the great national occasion, despite the difficult circumstances that Lebanon and the Lebanese live in. Al-Kawas carried the banner of defying the odds through a cultural and musical celebration.” Huge celebration of independence with a large audience that flocked to the theater of the UNESCO Palace to attend the celebration that was held on the occasion with the absence of the military parade in light of the presidential vacancy.This is a continuation of the renaissance path that Al-Qawas has taken since the beginning of her assumption of her duties as president to advance the Conservatory and restore its glory as a civilized face of Lebanon, and to perpetuate cultural diplomacy Lebanon is with the world through rentier activities and cooperation with institutions and official bodies, especially in Lebanon and abroad.
The National Institute was able to transfer the Lebanese to an atmosphere different from what they live in, an atmosphere similar to the cultural Lebanon that they were accustomed to before entering the tunnel of crisis, so this celebration came as a glimmer of hope, joy and optimism, especially with the sophistication that accompanied it with the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra led by, and the National Orchestra of Middle-Arabic Music, They excelled as leaders and musicians in presenting a rich and distinguished program inspired by the occasion.
After the opening with the national anthem, singing from the Fayhaa choir in a cappella style, the celebration was presented by journalist Roni Alfa, followed by a speech by Al-Murtada, in which he said: “Lebanon has a long history and great sacrifices for the sake of freedom and dignity. The outside called for their support in the squares and streets of Beirut and in all regions from unifying unitary demands, all of which called for the end of the mandate, evacuation and the achievement of complete and complete independence. And he added, “Lebanon and the industry of hope are synonymous. There is no country that clings to life more than Lebanon, and if the whole world leaves it, its children will not leave it.”
In his speech, Mikati said, “Independence does not only mean liberating the land from strangers, but it is also a blessing and a responsibility that must be preserved,” stressing the need to complete the contract of constitutional institutions by electing the head of the state and the symbol of its sovereignty as soon as possible.
He added, “Our joy today is incomplete due to the incomplete contract of constitutional institutions. Let us not consider that the existence of a vacuum in any position means only a group of Lebanese, because in fact it concerns all of us. We must expedite the completion of the contract of constitutional institutions by electing the head of the state and the symbol of its sovereignty as soon as possible.” To be the referee, and on the biography of the referee and the match, and in the presence of His Excellency the Saudi ambassador, we congratulate him from our hearts on the Saudi goals that have been achieved.
And he said: “No matter how bright or estranged we are and how we set out on the paths of life and in the world, there is nothing in the world more precious than the land of Lebanon, and it is not just a land we live on, but rather an entity that lives inside each one of us, and it is the homeland of a message and this message we must spread wherever we go.”
The festive program kicked off with the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra led by Maestro Garo Avissian, which moved the audience to the sophistication of symphonic music with enchanting pieces by the two composers: Naji Hakim (Lebanese Overture), Heba El Kawas (PleusisNo 1), and Jamal Abu El Hassan (Dance suite No. 1), and Tahia Symphony by Zaki Nassif: Butterfly and Zahra, Whatever Hurts Our Country.
Then the National Orchestra of Eastern Arab Music, led by Maestro Andre Al-Hajj, took the stage with the participation of the artist Ghassan Saliba. The artist, Ghassan Saliba, accompanied by the orchestra, performed songs: Watani Bayarafni (poetry and music by Osama Al-Rahbani), Gharibeen and Layl (poetry and music by Mansour Al-Rahbani), People of the Earth (poetry and music by Elie Al-Shuwairi), Decorate the Square (poetry and music by Mansour Al-Rahbani), and Saliba concluded the celebration with a song “If the King Goes” (Poetry and Melody by Mansour Rahbani).
The celebration included a poetic participation with poems inspired by the occasion by the poets Antoine Saadeh and Rudi Rahma.