Peoria Riverfront Museum – Violins of Hope

Peoria Riverfront Museum - Violins of Hope

The Peoria Riverfront Museum will host a special exhibit along with an instrument petting zoo and the Concert of Hope featuring the Peoria Symphony Orchestra.  The exhibit opens on Friday, August 4, 2023 and runs through Thursday, August 31, 2023.

The Jewish Federation of Peoria and the Jewish Community Centers of Chicago are co-hosts of the exhibit.  This exhibit commemorates the 20th anniversary of the Peoria Holocaust Memorial which is located on the Museum’s grounds.  It features Jewish stories of resistance and unity through the power of musical performance and includes a display of violins that are part of a collection owned by violin-makers Amnon and Avshalom Weinstein (a father and his son) who work in Tel Aviv and Istanbul.

Peoria Rivefront Museum - Peoria Holocaust Memorial

They gave these mostly cheap and unsophisticated instruments a make-over with results that are worthy of the best musicians and music halls.  They represent the victory of the human spirt over evil and hatred.  With as many as 6 million Jews murdered during World War 2, it’s important that they are remembered.  This is one of the ways this father and son do that.

Previously, the collection was on display in Rome, Tel Aviv, Berlin, Cleveland, London, Washington D.C., Los Angeles County, Chicago.  All the instruments are symbols of hope.  They remind us to remember those who were lost during the Holocaust and celebrate both those who perished and those who survived.

Jewish Federation of Peoria 2023Related musical events include a Suzuki School of Music instrument “petting zoo” where guests are invited to be part of the hands-on, interactive activity with a variety of musical instruments which will take place at the Museum on Sunday, August 6 from 1 – 2 pm.  The event is free with paid admission to the Museum.

Peoria Symphony Orchestra Logo 2023And on Sunday, August 27, the Peoria Symphony Orchestra will present a live performance beginning at 4 pm.  Four of the violins in the collection on display will be featured during this performance.    Tickets are $50 for museum members and $65 for non-members and are available HERE.

Learn more about the Peoria Riverfront Museum exhibit and purchase tickets at

Find other Peoria Riverfront Museum events on our Events Calendar