The Kennedy Center Terrace Theatre
The United States-Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce (USACC), in partnership with the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the United States, is hosting the “The Voice of the Orchid” Charity Concert to benefit the Marshall Legacy Institute’s humanitarian work in Azerbaijan to remove landmines and save lives.
Featuring classic and contemporary music played by world-class Azerbaijani musicians, the “Voice of the Orchid” concert will be held on Tuesday, May 3, at the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater, at 7:30 p.m. All proceeds from the event will be designated for the sponsorship of highly trained mine-detection dogs (MDDs) that will be sent to Azerbaijan to “sniff out” landmines and save lives.
Massive landmine contamination in western Azerbaijan poses an enormous risk to men, women, and children as they return to their homes to work, live, and play. As communities work to rebuild after years of war, mines pose deadly obstacles to establishing safe and productive use of the land. Since 2005, the Marshall Legacy Institute (MLI) has partnered with the Mine Action Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan (ANAMA) to support landmine clearance operations, helping to build ANAMA’s MDD capacity through the donation of highly trained MDDs that have searched and returned over 32 million square meters of formerly contaminated land to safe use. MDDs and their human handlers work as teams, and the dogs can search wide swaths of land up to 30 times faster than manual assets, making them a valuable component of the deminer’s toolbox. In 2021, MLI and ANAMA launched a multi-year partnership effort to provide 30 MDDs over two years to expand ANAMA’s demining capabilities. USACC is proud to contribute to these efforts and has worked with U.S. and Azerbaijan-based companies to sponsor two MDDs. Through the “Voice of the Orchid” concert, USACC hopes to raise the funds for another highly-trained lifesaving canine.
The Ophrys Caucasica is a wild orchid endemic to the Lesser Caucasus Mountains, known as Khari-Bulbul in Azerbaijan. As the symbol of the concert, the orchid represents historical and cultural areas where ANAMA is working to clear landmines and return lands to local people for safe and productive use.
In an effort to share a taste of Azerbaijani culture, the “The Voice of the Orchid” Charity Concert will feature the Baku Chamber Orchestra. The 19-member orchestra will delight guests with musical configurations featuring five singers’ voices and the violin, viola, violoncello, double bass, and piano, all in unique Azerbaijani style. Held in the magnificent Terrace Theater at the world-renowned Kennedy Center of Performing Arts, the concert will be a dazzling and unique event that will raise funds for an important, humanitarian cause. The evening’s program will also feature remarks from the USACC and MLI, and from the Minister of Culture and Ambassador of Azerbaijan to the United States.
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