E’Rootha’s 5th Annual Evening of the Arts

by Weam Namou

Dunya's Award

Again this year, the E’Rootha’s event brought to life Iraq’s rich cultural heritage with a beautiful program that included a strolling gallery and performing arts. Last year this organization honored me with the outstanding contributions of the arts award. This year the award went to a great and accomplished poet and a dear friend of mine, Dunya Mikhail – recent recipient of the Kresge Award (recent Kresge Literary Artist Fellow).

As I sat among the audience, I recalled years ago when I sat with a group of Iraqi-born artists and discussed ways to do what Matthew A. Kalasho, Executive Officer, says E’Rootha has been doing and intends to do more of – “to preserve our [Chaldean/Assyrian Syriac] history, language, culture, dance and our sense of community as we continue to grow and prosper in America.”

I realized and was happy that all along, our older generation and younger generation had the same desires, and shared similar dreams. I imagined how much farther we would go if we one day closely worked together. Since I’m an optimist, I see that happening very soon.