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Be the Change, Be the Inspiration

Violinist Iskandar Widjaya Mesmerizes Audience at Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali

(8/31/2012) The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali and the Bali International Convention Center hosted the internationally acclaimed German violinist Iskandar Widjaya performing at a concert in support or the UNICEF Check Out For Children Challenge held on Friday, August 24, 2012.

German-born, but of Indonesian descent, Iskandar Widjaja was a child prodigy who first picked up the violin at age four. Formally educated at Berlin’s finest musical academies, he has performed as a soloist and chamber musician with leading orchestras across Europe.

“Be The Change, Be The Inspiration – An Evening With Iskandar Widjaya” was warmly received by the hundred in attendance at the rare evening of elevated musical entertainment. Proceeds from the evening were donated directly to UNICEF - earmarked for the vaccination and education of impoverished children across the Asia Pacific region.

In keeping with a mission to inspire, the Iskandar Widjaya’s Bali appearance included a special “sharing session” during which young musicians were invited to a private “master class” where the Maestro shared insights on his love of music and the violin. The young musicians attending the session each received autographed copies of Iskandar’s debut CD “Bach ‘n Blues.

Widjaya's high regard for children and his love of music were also interwoven into the concert that followed the sharing session. Complimentary tickets to the concert were given to students from local schools, including a bus load of children from an orphanage in North Bali supported by the Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali.

The concert opened with an informative UNICEF video presentation highlighting the plight of children in the developing world. As the video concluded, Iskandar Wijaya took to the stage with a thrilling musical declaration of his love of Bach.

Changing to a more contemporary genre, Widjaya also performed a moving rendition of “You Raise Me Up” joined by a group of local music students. Children again shared the stage as the Joyful Choir to performed two popular songs, “We Are The World” and “The Greatest Love Of All” – accompanied, of course, by the visiting world class musician.

Enthralled by Widjaya’s artistry, listeners were brought to their feet in standing ovations that successfully summoned the violinist back to the stage for encores.

Bipan Kapur, Managing Director of The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali, announced following the concert: “It was indeed an honor to have a great musical talent such as Iskandar Wijaya play at the resort in support of our annual fundraiser. This event not only introduced classical violin music to the island of Bali, but also was also about nurturing the abilities of local children. I am happy to announce that this year we will be able to make a significant contribution to UNICEF and bring hope to those in need. I also have to draw attention to our dedicated team of associates and their fine efforts in rising to the challenge and making everything come together on the night.”

Wijaya’s performance represented the latest installment in a 17-year-long commitment by Starwood Hotels and Resorts in support of UNICEF, raising funds for causes that benefit impoverished children around the world. In the Asia Pacific region alone, the UNICEF Check Out For Children Challenge has supported the immunization of thousands of young women and children against a number of preventable diseases.