Benefit concert Saturday 8th Sept 2018

Start: 7:00 pm
Admission: 6:00 pm
Bahnhof Pauli Spielbudenplatz 21-22, 20359 Hamburg
Advance sale: 9 €
Box office: 10 €
Tickets: Eventim

For the freedom of art!
For the freedom of music!
For the freedom of the people!

We sing, play and speak for Nudem Durak:

Banana Concrete
Elbe 3
David Steffen
Christoph Scheffler
SONiA disappear fear (USA)
Frollein Smilla
Claus & Susanne

Präsentation: Jörgpeter von Clarenau
Special guest: Leyla Imret

Leyla Imret was elected mayor in the city of Cizre, but was deposed by the Turkish central government. She will tell us about her encounters with Nudem Durak.

Photo from the prison

Here’s a picture Nudem sent us out of jail along with the letter we posted recently.
We blurred the faces of her fellow prisoners to protect their privacy.
But to be clear: everyone in the picture is laughing. We are very happy about that. But it’s a snapshot. That certainly is not the atmosphere that prevails in prison everyday life. That’s what she wrote in her letter.

On the back of the photo Nudem wrote: “Despite all this – laughter is nice : )”

Letter No 3 from Nudem

We received the following letter from Nudem:

Nudems letter

I greet you with love and respect with the warm heart of the peoples of the Middle East, who have been crushed by pain through history to this day.
Writing you from this my country under these difficult conditions gives me morale and motivation. That in the 21st century, in the country where I still am, in modernity, people cannot freely express their thoughts and their art means that you cannot speak of justice, law, or equality.
They might not even post this letter, that I am writing to you right now, or they may want me to censor it completely before they would pass it on. I am afraid that’s why I cannot express my feelings so easily.

Let me talk about myself for a moment: With each passing day, the conditions become more difficult, our living space is becoming narrower. Our fundamental rights, which we are legally entitled to, such as visitation, telephone, letter, etc., are prevented by the intense disciplinary punishments we receive. As if that were not enough, we are repeatedly put in solitary confinement as a punishment. You know that under these conditions, the freedom of expression is limited as well!

Everybody needs art. But I am being robbed of it extensively and excessively. I play several instruments, but I do not have one at the moment. They won’t give me one. They even took my Tef (drum), which was the last instrument in my possession. I would now have the chance to develop further artistically. I could use this process to deepen my artistic ambitions. But there is no alternative, no flexibility on this subject on the part of the (prison) management. Until recently, I still had my crayons as work material and limited painting utensils, but they took them away from me too. At the moment, I have nothing to do artistically, as you will have come to understand. I would like to end this subject with the words of a wise person: a personality that does is not touched by spiritual depth, spiritual richness, that is not influenced by music, landscape, various artistic behaviors, if these cannot be experienced by a personality, their lifelines have dried up.

I received the package you sent me. Many Thanks! It means a lot to me that you think about me. You made me happy. The sweatshirt suits me. But the shirts were too big for me. Thank you again. I wish you all the best for ever.
I send you a homemade bracelet and a picture I made with my friends. I hope you like it.

Nudem Durak

Violence in prison

In 2017 Nudems guitar was destroyed in a nocturnal cell search. Her family was given the instrument as you can see in the picture. We can only imagine how hard it must be for Nudem to be without a guitar. That’s why we are already making plans to get her a new one!

Nudems destroyed guitar

Çiyaye me by Hanic

We’re happy to share another song for Nudem with you! Hanic from Iran sings “Çiyaye me”.

And that’s what she wrote to us:

“I wish that Nudem hear my song. Right now I’m living in the dark pieces of my life and I understand her when she said I saw a guitar in my dreams. Or when she said I followed my dreams. When I knew about this girls story I went to my office’s WC and I cried and I couldn’t control my tears. And now even I’m not in the prison but I’m living in my own darkness and I just want to sing a song that Nudem feels me. I wish that Nudem feels me because I feel Nudem in my life.” – Hanic

Thank you very much, dear Hanic!

Second letter from Nudem

Stamp of the prison administration

Dear friends:

I greet you with the pride and fire of freedom, the many colours of the flowers and the melodies and the faith in the beautiful days.

In prison, letters are the only way to contact us. No matter whether these consist only of paper and pencil and the description as a “letter” is so simple. For me it is not mediocre or ordinary. It is important and significant. I have received your loving, kind and precious letter.

Above all, it touches me that there are such sensitive and attentive people like you.
If people are thrown into jail for singing songs but these songs are still being heard outside, it means that it’s not the songs that are evil but the repressive mentality of the country they reside in. If they are disrespectful to art and the artist, then in my opinion they have no respect for anything.

Because I sang songs, they put me in prison. Because I play instruments, I was accused of “causing social activity” and therefore they confiscated my instruments. They can take everything from me, but never my language and my voice!

Knowing that such significant people like you are campaigning for me it gives me strength. For this reason, I want to thank you beautiful people very much.

So I remain with the hope that someday I can come together with such precious people like you in a free country and sing triumphant songs …

With a free soul and music notes, I greet you.

Nudem Durak

Nudems letter

Song for Nudem Durak by Elbe 3

The “Song for Nudem Durak” by David Steffen & Stefan Steffen marked the start of our campaign. On Wednesday, December 13th, Stefan and Jan aka Elbe 3 presented a new interpretation of the title at our information event in the program of the “Tatort Kurdistan Café” at the Centro Sociale in Hamburg.

Here is the live-recording – thanks a lot, Stefan and Jan!

Event at the Centro Sociale

On Wednesday, December 13th, we held an information event on Nudem Durak at the Centro Sociale in Hamburg. The “Tatort Kurdistan Café” had invited us to present our campaign.

We reported on Nudem’s fate and her current state of adhesion and played some of her songs. The slides of the lecture can be found here.

Afterwards, the music group “Elbe 3” played the song that marked the beginning of our campaign: “Song for Nudem Durak”.

“Elbe 3” playing “Song for Nudem Durak” (Photo: Tatort Kurdistan, ANF)

In another lecture we discussed the general oppression of the Kurdish culture in Turkey. The slides of the lecture including a detailed list of sources can be found here.

Lecture at the Centro Sociale

Another piece of live music followed: Claus Zimmermann presented his song “The Story of Nudem Durak”.

Song “The Story of Nudem Durak”

The event ended with some information about our campaign. We drew particular attention to our planned music event on 8 September 2018.

The money raised for Nudem Durak had a gratifying result. We would like to thank all donors!

Many thanks to the Centro Sociale, the Tatort Kurdistan Café and everyone who came to visit us!

A letter from Nudem

My dear friends and dear music friends,
I heard that you created a website about me / my story. I would like to thank you very much for your appreciation and all the effort!
I wish I could look at your site and follow you online. Unfortunately, there is no Internet in prison.
Once again my sincere thank to each one of you.
There is one thing I would like to say: I miss the music very much!
In love
Nudem Durak

Letter from Nudem with stamp of prison administration

Solidarity without borders instead of G20

The G20 summit with participants such as Erdogan was not the only event happening on Saturday in Hamburg. According to the organisers more than 76,000 people took to the streets and attended the demonstration themed “Solidarity without borders instead of G20”. Among the protesters were many Kurdish activists. We were there too and talked to many people who were interested in Nudem’s story.