WANTED: Artists, Writers, Activists, Philanthropists

Without wanting to sound alarmist, these times remind us of the days immediately following 9/11—only worse. (Background: We were founded during the summer of 2001 as the Levantine Cultural Center. We changed our name to The Markaz in July, 2015.)

Evidence of racism and Islamophobia is undeniable and growing by the day, against several American and immigrant communities. It may be of some relief that The Markaz has for years been a place where we are enlightened by independent voices and intelligent, meaningful programs.

The Markaz will continue to be a center for all Angelenos and all Americans. 

Many friendships have come about through The Markaz over the last 15 years, when folks attended one of the hundreds of programs—film, music, art, poetry, theatre, comedy, dialogue, lectures, conferences, Arabic & Persian classes and more—that have welcomed thousands of people in the greater Los Angeles area.

"Now more than ever it is important for the Markaz to exist, resist, and flourish. Thank you for everything you do!" —Crystal Keshawarz

We know you're out there! Join us as we work to rally everyone together and show that we stand for something: Arabs, Iranians, Muslims, Jews, Christians, Americans for peace, friends of the Middle East and North Africa, across all ethnicities, nationalities and faith traditions. 

writers wantedNeed we say it? This is the time when we need you to take an active role: 

There's a word common in shami or Palestinian Arabic for what we call the loquat—askadinya which, literally translated, means "the best of all worlds.”

We seek the best of all worlds, and that is why The Markaz ("the center" in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish and Urdu) is a center for all who want to better the world, who care about the Middle East and North Africa, and who are friends of the arts as well as advocates for peace and justice.

We are looking for the following:

Bloggers/writers/editors/social media people to write, edit and/or comment on articles pertaining to the many issues, histories, identities of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). You may be asked to review a book, movie, concert or other public performance or event and will receive free tickets.

Query with "QUERY" in the subject line of your email if you have an idea or send your blog post, article, story, poem or opinion to the editor here: editor@themarkaz.org (completed work should be 300-1,000 words). 

We're also interested in videos and podcasts.

local-not-local.jpgARTISTS wanted—musicians, poets, authors, painters, graphic artists, photographers, dancers et al—to potentially share your work with Markazis, that is, people from all walks of life who attend Markaz programs, take our classes or workshops, or who otherwise profess an interest in the MENA. Artist opportunities include some remuneration: info@themarkaz.org

action.jpgACTIVISTS/PRODUCERS wanted—to roll up your sleeves and work with us to organize/produce new concerts, conferences, talks, exhibits and more. Approved Markaz producing partners will receive compensation based on experience. Write us with "ACTIVIST" in the subject line of your email: info@themarkaz.org

INTERNS & VOLUNTEERS wanted—email us for a description of available positions! Subject line: Intern/Volunteer to info@themarkaz.org

philanthropy-icon.jpgPHILANTHROPISTS always needed to support The Markaz. Your support is absolutely central to making this possible. You do not have to be wealthy to make a donation to The Markaz. Every donation counts. 

Kindly send your tax-deductible contribution to The Markaz/MPV, 1626 N. Wilcox Ave., Suite 702, Los Angeles CA 90028-6206.

We are a progressive arts organization and believe in the power of the arts to change hearts and minds. 

Thank you!

p.s. With the president-elect threatening to shake down Muslims wanting to enter this country through "extreme vetting," fanning the flames of division using racist and xenophobic language against refugees, Mexicans and African Americans; and with anti-Arab/Muslim hate crimes at an all time high, this is not the time for us to sit on our hands. 

We should be asking ourselves, what are we doing to give Americans truly multifaceted representations of the greater Middle East? 

This is our time to write, to speak out, organize, and present our work. Check out our proposal to open a new 10,000sf center:

click here: The New Markaz 

The new Markaz calls for $2.5 million to thoroughly revamp and relaunch The Markaz Arts Center for the Middle East in such a way that we'll have a full professional staff and adequate facility for the first time

Get in touch: info@themarkaz.org.

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