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Arab Music Ensemble Spring Concert

Arab Music Ensemble Spring Concert

Date(s) - 06/04/2022
7:30 pm - 9:15 pm

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Spanos Theatre


$10-20 USD
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The Cal Poly Arab Music Ensemble will be joined by the Zaryab Ensemble for its spring concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June 4, in Spanos Theatre on campus.

The ensembles will perform both separately and as a combined group in the concert.

The Zaryab Ensemble will begin the program with Iranian and Tajik music under the artistic direction of Neema Hekmat. The group, based in the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento metropolitan area, includes internationally acclaimed Nasser Sabouri on vocals, Nariman Assadi on tombak and daff, Azadeh Nemat-Gorgani on piano, Maruf Noyoft on robab and vocals, and Hekmat on santur. 

The Arab Music Ensemble — a combined orchestra and choir with vocal and instrumental soloists — will join the Zaryab Ensemble to perform selections that have gained widespread popularity across Southwest Asia and North Africa, including a regional folksong sung in both Arabic and Persian, as well as Euro-American jazz and popular songs sung in Arabic, Persian and English. Acclaimed guest percussionist Faisal Zedan will return to lead the Arab Music Ensemble’s percussion section on riqq, darabukka and daff.

An Arab Music Ensemble chamber ensemble will begin the second half with a performance of two popular Sephardic songs which will flow into a musical suite by the orchestra and choir. It will feature some of the most celebrated repertoire of Arab culture and the larger region including a famous bashraf, an instrumental genre of Turkish classical music.

The concert will conclude with both ensembles performing classic selections of Iranian and Arab music together. Preeminent composers, poets and artists to be featured on the program include Abdel-Fattah Mustafa, Akbar Mohseni, Ali Ismael, Badi` Khayri, Fairuz, Ismail Haqqi Bey, Jamshid Sheybani, Karim Fakour, Mohamed Abdel-Wahab, the Rahbani Brothers, Sayyid Darwish, Yunis Al-Qadi and Ziad Rahbani.

San Luis Obispo dance director Jenna Mitchell will lead a dance troupe in original choreography in continuation of a longstanding collaboration of music and dance in the concerts of the Arab Music Ensemble. Cal Poly music Professor Ken Habib, a composer, performer, conductor, and ethnomusicologist, will direct the event.


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