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Sharing Music and Making This Place Our Home with Micah Hendler: PYP 283

Micah Hendler is the founder and director of the YMCA Jerusalem Youth Chorus, and one of Forbes' magazine's “30 under 30” (global leaders and change-makers under the age of 30). He founded the chorus to promote connection and peace between the teen communities of East and West Jerusalem; that is, inaccurately but roughly speaking, Palestinians and Israelis.

We met at a Seeds of Peace concert in New York City in May, and Micah graciously agreed to be on the podcast. I wasn't sure exactly how I was going to “shoehorn” this theme into Plant Yourself, but the wiser part of me whispered, “Who gives a shit? Just have an inspiring and wonderful conversation!”

So I did. And while it's not about antioxidants or inflammation or TMAO, I think you'll agree that the themes of music, peace, discovery, curiosity, and compassion are all related to human health and wellbeing. And that the plant-based community can look for models of engagement and progress outside of our own kraal.

Here's a video of their “anthem,” the song “Home” by Phillip Phillips.

Micah and I chatted about:

  • growing up Jewish in the US and seeing only one side of the conflict
  • discovering “Seeds of Peace” and finding his direction
  • how music builds community, even in conflict areas
  • how to weave together a transformational dialog process and music
  • starting a non-profit in a foreign country after graduating from Yale
  • “If you don't do it big, you'll be wasting your time”
  • getting mentored by Ysaye Barnwell of “Sweet Honey in the Rock” on how to create instant community through choral singing
  • getting the Youth Chorus off the ground
  • marketing to young people: “this will be the coolest thing you'll do while you're in high school”
  • selecting singers not just from the “peace camp”
  • how chorus and dialog support and reinforce each other
  • space for dialog on the micro (personal) and macro (political) levels
  • “Home,” by Phillip Phillips: the Youth Chorus anthem
  • how the participants have changed and grown – and how they've starting changing their communities
  • giving the students a leadership role
  • traveling the world
  • the significance of appearing on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: “our voices matter”
  • the 50-year plan
  • how you and I can help
  • and much more…

Enjoy, add your voice to the conversation via the comment box below, and please share – that's how we spread our message and spread our roots.

Links

The Jerusalem Youth Chorus

Seeds of Peace

East Jerusalem, West Jerusalem documentary – iTunes download (also available to stream on Netflix)

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Music

The Plant Yourself Podcast theme music, “Dance of Peace (Sabali Don),” is generously provided by Will Ridenour, a kora player from North Carolina who has trained with top Senegalese musicians.

It can be found on his first CD, titled Will Ridenour.

You can learn about Will, listen to more tracks, and buy music on his website, WillRidenour.com.

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Music

The Plant Yourself Podcast theme music, “Dance of Peace (Sabali Don),” is generously provided by Will Ridenour, a kora player from North Carolina who has trained with top Senegalese musicians.

It can be found on his first CD, titled Will Ridenour.

You can learn about Will, listen to more tracks, and buy music on his website, WillRidenour.com.

Gratitudes

Thanks to Plant Yourself podcast patrons – Kim Harrison – Lynn McLellan – Brittany Porter – Dominic Marro – Barbara Whitney – Tammy Black – Amy Good – Amanda Hatherly – Mary Jane Wheeler – Ellen Kennelly – Melissa Cobb – Rachel Behrens – Tina Scharf – Tina Ahern – Jen Vilkinofsky – David Byczek – Michele X – Elspeth Feldman – Leah Stolar – Allan Kristensen – Colleen Peck – Michele Landry – Jozina – Sara Durkacs – Kelly Cameron – Janet Selby – Claire Adams – Tom Fronczak – Jeannette Benham – Gila Lacerte – David Donohue – Blair Seibert – Doron Avizov – Gio and Carolyn Argentati – Jodi Friesner – RuthAnn Funderburk – Mischa Rosen – Michael Worobiec – AvIvA Lael – Alicia Lemus – Val Linnemann – Nick Harper – Bandana Chawla – Martha Bergner – Molly Levine – The Inscrutable Harry R – Susan Laverty the Panda Vegan – Craig Covic – Adam Scharf – Karen Bury – Heather Morgan – Bonnie Lynch of Plant Happy Oregon – Sabine Kurtzhals – Nigel Davies – Marian Blum – Teresa Kopel – Julian Watkins – Brid O'Connell – Shannon Herschman – Linda Ayotte – Holm Hedegaard – Isa Tousignant – Connie Haneline – Erin Greer – Alicia Davis – Heather O'Connor – Carollynne Jensen – Sheri Orlekoski of Plant Powered for Health – Karen Smith – Scott Mirani – Karen and Joe Crabtree – Kirby Burton – Theresa Carrell – Kevin Macaulay – Elizabeth Rothschild – Ann Jesse – Sheryl Dwyer – Jenny Hazelton – Peter W Evans – Justine Divett – Joshua Sommermeyer – Dennis Bird – Darby Kelly – Lori Fanney – Linnea Lundquist – Valarie Hummel – Emily Iaconelli – Levi Wallach – Rosamonde McAtee – Dan Pokorney – Stephen Leinin – Patty DeMartino – Mike and Donna Kartz – Deanne Bishop – Bilberry Elf – Marjorie Lewis – Tricia Adams – Ian Cramer – Nancy Sheldon – Lindsey Bashore – Gunn Marit Hagen – Tracey Gulledge – Lara Hedin – Meg from Mamasezz – Stacey Stokes – Ben Savage – Michael K – David Hughes -Coni Rodgers – Claire England – Sally Robertson – Parham Ganchi – Amy Dailey – Brian Tourville – Mark Jeffrey Johnson – Josie Dempsey – Caryn Schmitt – Pamela Hayden – Emily Perryman – Allison Corbett – Richard Stone – Lauren Vaught of Edible Musings – Erin Hastey – Sean Owens – Sagar Naik – Erika Piedra – Danielle Roberts – Michael Leuchten – Sarah Johnson – for your generous support of the podcast.

Disclosure

This post may contain amazon affiliate links. I may receive compensation from your actions on such links. It don't cost you a dime, tho.

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