About Expressive Arts Refuge

Choral director Betsy Blakeslee formed a musical team that uplifted the lives of youth and adults in the French refugee camp of Calais Jungle, and the Greek camp in Skaramagas. In 2018, EAR takes its music program to Bourj el Shamale in southern Lebanon.

EAR’s expressive arts programs give refugee youth a break from adult responsibilities and a chance to express themselves in rhythm, song, and community. EAR finds adult musicians in refugee camps and provides them a platform to perform. It has given over 150 refugee adults and youth a voice through microphones, stages, and musical expression.

EAR’s team has included Moira Smiley, Tawfic Halaby, Tami Halaby, Tarek Halaby, Judy Kranzler, Dave Watt, Sydney Lea, and Kym Proctor. Its repertoire is culturally diverse, and includes body music.