Hundreds of refugees in Germany have been treated to a special concert from some of the most renowned names in classical music in the country. The free show titled "Welcome Among Us" was put on at the Berlin Philharmonic Hall on Tuesday 1 March.
Several hundred refugees and volunteer workers saw Daniel Barenboim, Ivan Fischer and Sir Simon Rattle perform with the Berlin Philharmonic, the Staatskapelle Berlin and the Konzerthaus Orchestra Berlin. Artistic director of the Berlin Philharmonic Martin Hoffman said, "Music is a language everybody understands, a universal language. With this music we wanted to make a small contribution towards solidarity and a feeling of welcome."
Sir Simon Rattle, the conductor at Berlin Philharmonics, said, "I'm not really the person to talk about politics. But still, we should not be living in a world where many millions of people are being displaced from their countries and have sometimes no possibility of where to go."
The performance and message behind the show was praised by many of the concert-goers. "I would like to thank everyone who organised this concert which made it possible for Syrians, Afghans and many others to watch this performance," said Syrian refugee Amer.
Raman Khalaf, who is also from Syrian, said, "From the very beginning, Germans and Austrians opened their borders for us. People took to the streets in our support and today, the musicians have invited us. The fact that they are playing for us is truly indescribable, thank you."