Basma – Orwa – Atanasovski: International Mediterranean Day Concert

About the trio:

Atanasovski, Basma, and Orwa are a diverse trio that leverages music as a means of fostering intercultural dialogue and raising awareness about the devastating effects of war. They aim to heal the collective trauma of Syrian refugees and serve as a powerful reminder of the importance of peace.  Atanasovski was born in Slovenia to migrant parents, Basma and Orwa were forced to move to Europe as refugees due to the war in their home country of Syria. Despite these challenges, they have continued to make music and share their talents with audiences.

About the artists:

Vasko Atanasovski, the initiating member of the trio, is an acclaimed virtuoso musician on both the saxophone and flute. Born and raised in Slovenia, he is of migrant background, with his parents having moved from North Macedonia to Slovenia. He is well-known and respected in Slovenia, and has been active in many diverse international musical collaborations. As a second-generation migrant, Atanasovski has a wide audience in Slovenia and is a well-respected musician.


Basma Jabr is a vocal artist originally from Kuwait, who was raised in Syria and now lives in Vienna. With ten popular songs recorded in Syria, she became a star among the younger generation there. Upon arriving in Vienna, she entered the Austrian music scene as one of the finest Ethno music vocalists in the world through her participation in various musical projects and her duet with Orwa Saleh. In recent years, she has performed and recorded throughout Europe, captivating audiences with her soulful voice, exceptional character, and presence.


Orwa Saleh is a Syrian musician and composer who left Damascus in 2012. With his advanced approach, he is redefining the way the oud is played beyond what was previously thought possible. With his exceptional style and melodies, he began to rebuild his career in Austria, releasing the album “Raheel” in 2014 and collaborating on “Windows to the East” in 2016. He was awarded the Integration Prize of Upper Austria in 2015 and has since become a renowned musician who performs and collaborates on projects all over the world. Saleh brings stories and songs from ancient Syrian tales and modern feelings to his unique music.




About the concert:

The Basma-Orwa-Atanasovski concert contributed towards the collective efforts of more succesful intercultural European-Arab dialogue and a stronger cooperation between countries on the two shores of the Mediterranean. The concert was one of the 36 concerts that was held simultaneously in 25 Euro-Mediterranean countries with the aim of celebrating the diversity of the Mediterranean and enhancing mutual ties.


The concert offered an opportunity to bring high-quality music to underserved local communities and to sensitise them towards a more positive attitude towards a multicultural society. The event was initiated from within the artistic community, which works hand in hand with artists of diverse backgrounds to showcase their work and tell their stories from their own perspectives. The event implemented within the frame of Art is Us project by APIS Institute ans supported by Anna Lindh Foundation and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Slovenia.


The event was accompanied by the roundtable discussion on the importance of intercultural dialogue in the Mediterranean and the binding power of art:

This project was produced by APIS Institute, Slovenia in collaboration and support of MFA Slovenia and Anna Lindh Foundation.