Music Dance

Musical Legacies of S. Makkawi, M. Bashir, and W. Akel

Sami Asmar

The past few months witnessed the loss of three Arab musicians who were pioneering giants and history-makers - Sayyid Makkawi, Munir Bashir and Walid Akel - three different men on different paths: Makkawi, an Egyptian composer and singer who had reached a career peak and was nearing retirement; Bashir, an Iraqi oud player and composer with international acclaim; and Akel, a Lebanese pianist prodigy who performed Western classical music with a vision to invigorate his art in Lebanon.

Sayyid Makkawi's Five Thousand Tunes

Remembering Farid al-Atrash: A Contender in the Age of Giants

Sami Asmar

The same family that spearheaded the rebellion against the French in Syria's Druze Mountain after World War I also produced two of the most renowned Arab musical artists of this century. Farid al-Atrash and his sister Amal, along with their brother Fouad, grew up in the religious minority clan of their parents, Princess Alia and Prince Fahd al-Atrash.

Julien Weiss Discusses Traditional and Contemporary Arab Music

Sami Asmar

In 1976, a 23-year-old French classical guitarist listened to a record of classical Arab music, fell in love with it, and dedicated the rest of his life to studying this art. Born and raised in Paris, Julien Weiss, of Swiss and Alsatian heritage, has become one of the few accomplishedqanun players in the world, having studied with masters from throughout the Arab world.

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