August 4, 2021
One year ago today, a massive warehouse explosion rocked Beirut, Lebanon, killing hundreds of innocents and displacing 300,000.
On this anniversary, the Peoria Riverfront Museum announces "From Peoria to Lebanon," an unprecedented contemporary art exhibition at the museum and piano concert in partnership with the Scottish Rite Theatre coming to Peoria in December 2021.
Among the most prominent local populations of central Illinois are thousands of Americans whose family members immigrated from Lebanon. The Peoria Riverfront Museum exists to help us inspire each other and be inspired by each other. So with the help of our friend Dr. Tony Karam, a renowned Lebanese physician and classical pianist, this exhibition will feature donated art from the top contemporary artists of Lebanon. Dr. Karam will also play a piano concert on the greatest piano in Peoria, philanthropist Kim Blickenstaff's newly purchased nine-foot concert grand Steinway in the historic Scottish Rite Theatre. Art will be auctioned. Proceeds will benefit relief efforts through the Lebanese American University Medical Center, a qualified U.S. 501(c)(3).
Peoria physician Dr. Michele Couri serves as honorary chair and the local Itoo Society and is a partner on the project.