the latest headlines from bbc news. police in istanbul are hunting a gunman who opened fire on new year's eve revellers at an istanbul nightclub, killing 39 people. almost 70 others are being treated in hospital. funerals have begun for some of the victims. officials say 15 foreigners were killed, including citizens from israel, france, belgium, tunisia, india, jordan and saudi arabia. at least 23 people have been killed and 17 more are missing after a ferry caught fire off the coast of indonesia. the vessel was en route to a resort island around 50 kilometres from the capital, jakarta. here in the uk, the queen is said to be feeling "better" despite missing a new year's day church service as she recovers from a heavy cold. other members of the royal family attended the service at sandringham, the queen's norfolk estate. now on bbc news. the syrian national orchestra for arabic music was founded in damascus in 2003.
but, after the outbreak of war in 2011, many of its members were forced to flee the country. our world follows four musicians — as they prepare for a ground—breaking series of concerts, reuniting orchestra members in exile, and those in syria, in the hope of changing perceptions of their war—torn nation. over ten years ago, a remarkable orchestra played in damascus. performing arabic music at the highest level. but when war broke now the 2011, some musicians were forced to flee
syria. but since 2011, the country has been torn apart by a this is the story of an attempt to bring the orchestra back together, for a once—in—a—lifetime tour, to reunite those living in syria and as refugees. and try to change the way the world sees their war—torn nation. since the beginning of the war in syria, an estimated 9 million people have fled their homes in search of a new life. one of them is essam. he claimed asylum in america in 2013, after being invited to teach music in a university here. i watched bombs, i watched all kinds of military issues. nobody knows when the bombs will come. did you know people killed? a lot of my friends, a lot of relatives too.
his two younger sisters and parents are still living in damascus. he has not seen them since he left. syria, what does it mean? for me, family. you know. hopefully... this will be like a bad dream, maybe? and to have a better life. before the war, essam, his sisters and brother played in the syrian national orchestra for arabic music. essam took over the orchestra in 2003, conducting them for ten years, touring europe and the middle east. when he left, he did not know
if he would ever lead them again. but that could be about to change. international organisers are trying to bring the orchestra to europe for a one—off tour that would reunite musicians from inside of syria and those now living abroad, like essam. this is our dream actually. my dream. his friends deema and omarare helping him prepare. essam wrote this piece for the orchestra while still living in syria. but the tour hangs in the balance. since the outbreak of war, it is almost impossible to get a
visa for syrians to leave the country. well, he is very stressed. he's been so busy lately, writing his own staff and worried about the music, the visa... oh my god! so yes, you can see... he lost a lot of weight! he lost a lot of weight and i gained it! i gave it to omar! essam himself may be unable to travel. because of his ongoing asylum claim there is a real risk he will not get permission to leave the usa. but that has not stopped him from working on music for the tour. how will you feel if the visa does not come through? do you want me to cry now? i mean, for sure, it is out of my hands, or out of anybody‘s
hands. but it is better to try. and keep fingers crossed... so hopefully i will be there, hopefully. like essam, many members of the orchestra are now refugees. more than 100,000 syrian refugees have applied for asylum in germany since the war began. and it is now home to violinist sousan, originally from aleppo. singing: hello...
she has now settled into life in germany, and teaches music to refugee children who have recently arrived from syria. since becoming a refugee, music has become even more important to her. shejoined essam's orchestra as a music student in damascus and has not played with them for four years. while music has helped sousan, for some refugees it is simply
a painful reminder of everything they have lost. this man is from northern syria. he played in the orchestra before fleeing to sweden with his young family in 2013. he's one of the foremost kanoon players in the middle east and for him upcoming concerts are an important way of preserving syrian culture. but rehearsing for the tour is difficult. since moving to sweden, he's taken over looking after his
since the beginning. she is a singer and he is the lead violin player. and for mace, these concerts have a special significance. singing as syrians, it is almost impossible for mace and rachid to get visas to leave the country. they have not left syria since the start of the war. and with one week to go before the tour, they still don't know if they will get permission to travel. getting 30 people out of syria is a huge logistical challenge for the organisers, which has taken six months of negotiation. it was very, very, very difficult just communicating with people in syria, getting the visas, they had to go to beirut to get those, then there were all sorts of hiccups along the way, suspicions of what we were doing, fears that people would stay over, at every level it was complicated. the first stop of
the tour is amsterdam. and it is a nervous wait to see who will arrive. some musicians did not get permission to travel, and others were only issued with visas at the last minute. but at last, they are here. and the years of separation are over. and finally the orchestra can start playing together. music plays the reunited orchestra contains members from across the political and religious spectrum. what is interesting about syria before the revolution was, the way everyone was so mixed there and it
was very harmonious between christians, sunni and shia, i think there were tensions but people work together. the orchestra in a way reflects that, we have people of all different strands and religions, people with very different views of course, they all come together in the music. the tour is masterminded by gorillaz front man damon albarn. he played with essam in damascus before the war and then wanted to bring them back together. i thought, i'll bring them over here and get them here, so
physically people can see them, people can see syrians doing something other than having their few possessions in a muddy field macedonia, you know what i mean? something positive, positive and beautiful about syria. it is tangible, it is a tangible thing and it is music. you should do some of this in the concerts... music is always a good starting point to open the dialogue. singing but one member of the orchestra is not here. the conductor, essam, did not get a visa. his sisters have come from damascus to sing in the choir and can't believe that he's notjoining them. they‘ re keeping essam updated about the tour. but the show must go on.
get them playing with each other and communicating and the dynamic of the orchestra working. it is going to be... it is a very organic thing, this one! and rehearsals carry on late into the night. after four days of intense rehearsals, the orchestra are ready to perform. it's been exhausting. we are from syria.
the music makes me feel like i'm in damascus. they let me feel... i miss my family and syria. the orchestra are joined by artists from across the world. there were three guys in front of us crying. at the first bars already, we were like... this is so big! but now, their thoughts are starting to turn to home. traditional music plays. hgppy
happy new year. as we start 2017, let's look at how we ended 2016. the month of des was a mild month but also, unusually, quite a dry month, too. the driest conditions were to be to be found in the south—east. towards the north—west, rainfall amounts weren't typical of the time of year. the dry theme was down to a big area of high pressurep often in charge. we still have high pressure in charge as we start 2017. this is how monday is shaping up. northerly winds rotating in the area of high pressure in the mid—atlantic, meaning a fairly chilly airs mc. the
winds from a north or north—westerly direction. showers from eastern scotla nd direction. showers from eastern scotland and england. they'll fall as sleet and snow over higher grounds. rain at lower levels. for the moster part, it is dry, bright, crisp sunshine. significantly cooler than we saw over the festive period. heading through the course of monday, you can see a blue hue returning to the map. it'll be particularly cold into the early hours of tuesday through central and southern parts. in rural spots, minus5orso. southern parts. in rural spots, minus 5 or so. things will turn milderfrom the minus 5 or so. things will turn milder from the north—west. increasing amounts of cloud pushing in from the atlantic. high pressure with us as we head through the day on tuesday. you will notice weather fronts out from the north and north—east. so, a bit of rain and drizzle over the hills and coast towards the north—west of the country of the further south and east, your best bet of staying dry with spells of wintry sunshine. and by the time we get to tuesday highs
of 5—8. by the time we get to tuesday highs of 5-8. still by the time we get to tuesday highs of 5—8. still on the chilly side. on tuesday night into, we northerly winds once again extending further south across the country. slightly milderair south across the country. slightly milder air out towards the south—west. that's how it looks as we head to wednesday. pressure sitting towards the west in the atlantic, low pressure in the east. so still a northerly air flow. that could bring a few scattered showers around exposed coastal areas towards the north and east. inland most places bright and dry, afterfrost, potentially fog to start with, too. as we head through wednesday night, it is looking like another cold one. once againa it is looking like another cold one. once again a widespread frost as we move into the early hours of thursday morning and there could also be mist and fog to contend with. be prepared for reduced visibility through the middle of the week. temperatures around 4—6. visibility through the middle of the week. temperatures around 4-6. quite a chilly day through the course of thursday. we'll draw in a westerly influence to the weather as we look
to the end. week. this is friday, and you will notice the weather front in the north—west pushing south—eastwards across the country tending to fizzle out. nothing too disruptive in terms of the weather but we'll see a spell of rain and breezy conditions moving slowly south—eastwards and it'll be milder too. many back into double figures by friday. it is a fairly short—lived milder spell. looking ahead into next weekend, after the rain, high pressure building again and a return to northerly winds. some uncertainty about the exact direction of the winds. it could be further north—west and perhaps furtherer towards the north—east. there could be some showers around. many places dry and frosty, scenes like the one behind me, frost and fog and into the early part of next week, looking cloudier, not as chilly with the driest of the weather towards the south. i'll update you again tomorrow, goodbye. this is bbc news. the headlines at 10pm: police in turkey continued to hunt
for a police in turkey continued to hunt fora gun man police in turkey continued to hunt for a gun man who launched an attack ona for a gun man who launched an attack on a nightclub in istanbul, killing 39 people. moments earlier, partygoers were welcoming in the new year. a manhunt is underway for the attacker. here, police arrest five men after a car hit two girls in oldham last night, killing one and leaving the other in a critical condition in hospital. the royal family attends a new year's day church service in sandringham, but without the queen, who still has a heavy cold. and a spectacular fireworks display launches hull's year as uk city of culture.