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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: "Sisters in the Sky" - practice English with Spotlight

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to spotlight I'm Colleen lava

and I'm Rina dan light uses a special

English method of broadcasting it is

easier for people to understand no

matter where in the world they live


a group of people stand in a large room

above their heads there is a small white

airplane but it is not flying in the sky

it is hanging from the ceiling it is

part of an art show other art hangs on

the walls there are many pictures of

women some are wearing green clothes

that cover their whole body

the women are pilots they fly airplanes

this art show is at San Diego State

University in the United States it is

part of a meeting about women's rights

it is called seize the sky all the art

is by Simone al Berg Karen she is an

artist from Denmark today's spotlight is

on the work of this artist


Simone's first artwork was about the air

and the sky she saw the air as a place

where people can be free she produced

paintings and videos to represent this


Simone began to think that this freedom

was especially important for women she

had heard about women who had flown

airplanes in World War two so for her

next project she decided to talk to

these women

she wanted to produce arts about their

lives but one of the women pilots would

only meet with Simone under one

condition the woman wanted Simone to

learn how to fly an airplane so Simone

took flying lessons she became a pilot

she flew herself to the United States

there she met with the female pilots

from World War two she took pictures of

them and made drawings the result was an

art show called sisters in the sky

simone loved flying while flying she

felt free from the limits of land and

she believed this feeling was important

for all women she traveled around the

world to meet other female pilots she

made a film about the first female pilot

in Iran

Simone also spent time with female

fighter pilots in Turkey

she took their pictures and included

them in another art project

she put many photographs together to

make interesting images

then a few years later Simone was

reading a Danish newspaper she read a

story about a 16 year old girl in Kabul

Afghanistan the girl's name was Faria

Farias story gave Simone and idea for

her next project simone told cinema

netherlands about the story she read the

story begins with a girl in kabul just

out of Taliban rule she comes to school

and her wish for the future is to fly I

read about it and decided to test it at

least she should have a chance to try to

fly an airplane so in September 2002

Simone flew a small airplane from

Denmark to Kabul Afghanistan she

traveled with another pilot

Magnus bhejna their airplane was very

old and small Simone told the television

show wide-angle about the difficulties

of the journey there are so many it is

hard to tell them all generally weather

plays a large part in relation to the

challenge of flying in any country this

is especially true when flying in the

Hindu Kush of Afghanistan

we were not very sure of the airplanes

performance as we reached heights up to

12,000 feet it was also difficult to get

permission to fly airplane pilots must

tell people on land about their plans to

fly but in 2002 Afghanistan was at war

this area of the sky was very controlled

the authorities were not permitting any

airplanes in the sky but Simone wanted

to show that the sky can be free Simone

and Magnus faced many troubles on their

flight it was difficult for them to find

fuel they had to talk to many people for

permission to fly or land their airplane

but they met many people along the way

who were willing to help them they

finally landed their airplane in Kabul

this was very dangerous

because they did not have permission to

fly there but Simone found

fatiah and taught her to fly fatiah was

able to reach her dream of flying an

airplane and Simone was very happy to

reach her goal too

Simone and Magnus spent some time with

ferry all and her family then they

returned to Denmark Magnus made a film

about their journey it is called smiling

in our war zone it shows how far y'all

learned to fly but Simone and Magnus

also learned many things

Magnus tells the Danish Film Institute

about a discovery that he made


as it turns out there are already two

sisters in Afghanistan who are

helicopter pilots we came to Afghanistan

with a completely developed idea we

thought that ferial would be the first

girl in that country after the Taliban

to fly here we come with our artistic

ideas and our dreams and they are

already flying two sisters did train at

the Afghan Air Force Academy they flew

together for over 16 years one of them

voluma died a few years ago the other

sister is now the only female pilot in

the Afghan army her name is Colonel

Latifah Nabi Zeta she flies a helicopter

that brings supplies to Afghan soldiers

Colonel Latifah came to speak at San

Diego University she was part of the

meeting about international women's

rights Simone our bag cans art show sees

the sky was also part of this meeting

first people saw the videos and art

about female pilots then they listened

to Colonel Latifah tell her story

the US Air Force reports that at the

meeting Colonel Latifah said

I am very happy to attend it is a good

opportunity for me to share my

experiences with other women I am very

happy that I can participate as a woman


I am proud for me and for my country and

for Afghan Air Corps above Colonel

Latifah the small airplane hangs from

the ceiling

it is the airplane that Simone and

Magnus flew to Afghanistan fatiah flew

the same airplane in Kabul

Colonel Latifah is encouraging girls

like Faria to one day become pilots then

they will join what Simone Albert Karen

calls The Sisterhood across cultures and



the writer and producer of this program

was Rena dam the voices you heard were

from the United States and the United

Kingdom all quotes were adapted for this

program and voiced by spotlight you can

listen to this program again and read it

on the Internet at


we hope you can join us again for the

next spotlight program goodbye




The Description of "Sisters in the Sky" - practice English with Spotlight