Magbasa pa ng Iba
June 20th was declared World Refugee Day by the United Nations. Throughout the long history of humankind, there have been refugees all over the world, as the result of conflicts or natural or human-made disasters. In our three-part show, we pay tribute to some of the distinguished artists, who happened to be refugees. These special individuals imbue their struggles, love, and longing into moving creations of music, art, and literature that endure the test of time. Hungarian-born Jewish orchestral and operatic conductor, Sir Georg Solti, is an excellent example of the positive impact to society one refugee can achieve. After graduating from the prestigious Franz Liszt Academy, his blossoming career as a conductor was halted by conflict and he became a religious refugee. After the war, Mr. Solti returned to prominence and was appointed music director by many renowned music companies, such as the Bavarian State Opera, Covent Garden Opera Company and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, helping them achieve even greater international recognition in the operatic and classical music world. In 1968, Queen Elizabeth II awarded him with the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire and knighted him in 1972. Renowned universities such as Harvard, Yale, Oxford, DePaul, and the Royal College of Music have awarded him with honorary fellowships and degrees. The music industry honored him with 31 Grammy Awards, 14 Grand Prix Mondial du Disque awards, and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996. Near the end of his fulfilling life, Mr. Solti founded the World Orchestra for Peace, a large gathering of 81 musicians from 40 nations. In his own words, Mr. Solti believed in the “unique strength of music as an ambassador for peace.” The Orchestra debuted in Geneva to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the United Nations in 1995.