Memories of Zarah (Audio)

Feb 18, 2020
Created by Janete El Haouli, in collaboration with José Augusto Mannis (2016). Introduced by Karen Werner.
Janete El Haouli is a fixture in the Brazilian radio art scene and beyond. She has produced radio art pieces for networks around the world; for 15 years she produced the program “New Music: radio for thinking ears” (1991-2005) at a radio station in Londrina, Brazil. El Haouli has also worked for many years in Brazil as a professor and researcher in radio art. Memories of Zarah was created in collaboration with José Augusto Mannis, a Brazilian electroacoustic composer, performer, sound designer, and professor. Memories of Zarah is a radio play that revolves around a 1998 recording of Janete El Haouli’s mother a month before she died. Her mother’s name was Zahrah Jahjah El Haouli. The artists write: “Zahrah was born in 1918 in Zahle, between the mountains of Lebanon and the Bekaa plateau. In 1948, at the age of 30, married and with three children, she left everything behind, bringing only the memories of her distant Lebanon, to which she never returned. In this piece we hear a story that can be felt by all those who immigrated and still immigrate today... The soundscapes used in the work were imagined by the authors based on information obtained about the places of origin. The songs correspond to the repertoire of records they listened to in their daily lives, which together with the tuning of Lebanese radio stations...remained the only sound links maintained with their homeland.” Memories of Zahrah was first broadcast on Rádio MEC FM, Rio de Janeiro in 2017. - Introduced by Wave Farm Radio Artist Fellow 2019/2020, Karen Werner.