Musical Performance: Original Works of Syrian Classical Music Composer Zaid Jabri

Thu, April 17, 2014 8:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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Alwan for the Arts is pleased to announce an evening of original and unique contemporary classical music by Syrian composer Zaid Jabri. Zaid Jabri comes to the US from Poland to offer a very rare evening at Alwan, which is sure to offer an inimitable and anomalous performance that will entice and challenge the audience’s impressions of new Middle Eastern music.

Tickets: $20 General | $15 for Students, Members and Seniors
Available at the door or online.
(Buy now*) (*A small online fee is applied)

Doors open at 7:30 pm


Beati Pacifici, for Soprano and Piano
Glyptos 2 , for Flute, Clarinet, Trumpet, Violin, Piano, Double Bass
Solo for Cello Solo
In Memoriam Solhi al Wadi, for Clarinet, String Trio and Tape

Performing with Zaid Jabri
at Alwan for the Arts
Cello: Nan-Cheng Chen
Piano: Emily Manzo
Flute: Beomjae Kim
Clarinet: Kinan Azmeh
Viola: Miranda Seilaff
Violin: Adrianna Mateo
Voice: Sharon Harms
Double bass: Stephen Harms
Trumpet: Amir ElSaffar

About Zaid Jabri

Zaid Jabri is a Syrian composer of electro-acoustic music, currently living and working in Poland. Heralded as a creator of fascinating, complex and brilliantly executed unique compositions, Jabri’s works have been performed by the Armenian National Symphony Orchestra, the Syrian National Symphony Orchastra, the English Chamber Orchestra and the Pacific Symphony Orchestra among numerous others. In 2008 Zaid Jabri was invited by the Istanbul Bilgi University Music Department as Artist/Composer during The Days of Polish Music and in 2011 he became a member of ZKP (The Polish Composers Union). Zaid Jabri obtained his M.A. degree with honors from the Music Academy of Cracow in Poland where he studied composition with Zbigniew Bujarski and is currently working on his PhD at the same academy under the supervision of Professor Krzysztof Penderecki.


About the Accompanying Ensemble

At age of 25, Cellist NAN-CHENG CHEN is the executive director and founder of the New Asia Chamber Music Society (NACMS), a member of Sonic Escape, and many other music ensembles. An active soloist, Nan-Cheng has collaborated with Simon Bolivar Orchestra, Queens Symphony Orchestra, Metro-West Symphony, Quincy Symphony and Symphony Pro Musica. Nan-Cheng Chen is considered one of the most recognized Taiwanese performing cellists of today. Nan-Cheng holds a B.M. and M.M. from The Juilliard School.

EMILY MANZO is a pianist, songwriter and vocalist that has performed in concerts and festivals of chamber music, experimental music and rock music. As a vocalist and pianist, she has premiered the works of many American composers. Her degrees were earned at the New England Conservatory, the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and Columbia University where her teachers included Stephen Drury and Lydia Frumkin. Emily performs regularly in New York as a classical solo and chamber musician, and with her pop group, Christy & Emily. She can be heard as vocalist and pianist on Tzadik, SHSK’H, The Social Registry, Big Print (UK), Klangbad (DE), Merge, and Jagjaguar. With funding from the Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Foundation. She completed her recording of the complete Chopin Preludes at Merkin Concert Hall in 2012.

Flutist BEOMAJAE KIM has been seen in festivals and concerts sponsored by UNICEF, The New School Concert, Kumho Cultural Foundation, the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University and BMI Foundation, Inc. Performances have featured him at concert venues such as Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, Seoul Arts Center and Kumho Art Hall. Kim holds a Bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College. He is currently concluding a Master’s degree at Manhattan School of Music.

KINAN AZMEH is a rising starswith his distinctive sound across different musical genres. Born in Damascus, Kinan was the first Arab to win the premier prize at the 1997 Nicolai Rubinstein International Competition, Moscow. A graduate of Juilliard school as a student of Charles Neidich, and of the Damascus High institute of Music where he studied with Shukry Sahwki, Nicolay Viovanof and Anatoly Moratof, and Damascus University’s School of Electrical Engineering, Kinan is currently finishing his doctoral work at the City University of New York. Kinan has appeared worldwide as a soloist, composer and improviser with Opera Bastille, Paris; Tchaikovsky Grand Hall, Moscow; Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall and the UN's general assembly, New York; the Royal Albert hall, London; Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires; der Philharmonie; Berlin; the Library of Congress, the Kennedy Center, Washington DC; the Mozarteum, Salzburg; and the Damascus Opera House in its opening concert in his native Syria.

Violist MIRANDA SEILAFF performs with ensembles including the Caravel Trio, String Orchestra of New York City, Wet Ink, and Columbia Composers. She has toured internationally with Arcos String Orchestra and the Lucerne Festival Academy. In 2008, she was featured in Carnegie Hall’s Making Music: Pierre Boulez, and has played with The Knights, a dynamic chamber orchestra, since 2002. She performed in outreach activities in NY Public Schools, which culminated in performances with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble. Miranda is on the Violin and Viola Faculty of the Diller-Quaile School of Music and the School for Strings in New York. As a Morse Fellow at Juilliard, she taught a month of lessons leading up to an interactive performance of Crumb’s “Black Angels.” She received her Bachelor of Music degree from Rice University where she studied with Karen Ritscher, and Master of Music from the Juilliard School where she studied with Karen Tuttle.

Regarded as a lyrical, powerful, and emotionally raw performer, new music violinist ADRIANNA MATEO has performed as a soloist at the American Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in collaboration with its first Artist-In-Residence DJ Spooky, and on tour internationally with her ongoing composer collaboration project {NUE|LUSH}. Merging her talents as a singer-songwriter, improviser, and violinist, Adrianna has performed at La MaMa, the Living Room, and in Africa and Southeast Asia. She will perform a violin and electronics piece written for her at the 2014 Bang On A Can Summer Marathon. Adrianna performs and coaches at the Kaufman Center's Special Music School, and is studying guitar.

American soprano SHARON HARMS is known for fearless performances of works for the concert and operatic stage. Sharon has sung premieres by living composers Charles Wuorinen, Louis Karchin, John Eaton, and Georg Friedrich Haas, among others, and has been featured with the Argento Ensemble, Ensemble Signal, Simon Bolivar Orchestra, Ensemble Mise-en, Alter Ego Ensemble, and League of Composer's Orchestra. Sharon has held two fellowships at the Tanglewood Music Festival and was a guest artist at the Buffalo Festival and L.A. International New Music Festival. She recently shared a Latin Grammy nomination with Gabriela Ortiz and will be featured on a new CD of works by Louis Karchin with Da Capo Chamber Players on Bridge Records. She will also record on the Innova label with composer Jesse Jones and the Scharoun Ensemble in Berlin. Sharon holds a Master of Music degree from Indiana University.

Composer and musician STEPHEN HARMS writes for and performs a myriad of styles including new music, orchestral music, opera, chamber music, art song, recital, big band, jazz, latin, fusion, avant-garde, free jazz, freely improvised, middle eastern, Maqam, Klezmer, soul, rock, and americana, among others. Stephen plays double bass, electric bass (4,5, and 6 string fretted and fretless), cello, guitar (acoustic, electric, 12-string, etc.), and various string instruments. Recent and ongoing projects include co-leading Better Bidness Bureau, co-leading Millbranch String Theory, and performing with Salaam, and other recording and live projects.

Iraqi-American trumpeter, santur player, vocalist, and composer AMIR ELSAFFAR has distinguished himself with a command over disparate musical styles and a singular approach to combining aspects of Middle Eastern music with American jazz, establishing himself as an important voice in an age of cross-cultural music making. ElSaffar has created new techniques to play microtones and ornaments that are idiomatic to Arab music but are not typically heard on the trumpet. He also performs Iraqi maqam actively in the US, Europe and the Middle East as a vocalist and santur player. As a composer, ElSaffar has used the microtones found in maqam music to create a unique approach to harmony and melody. ElSaffar is a recipient of the prestigious Doris Duke Performing Artists Award, and has received commissions and grants from the MAP Fund, Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Newport Jazz Festival, and Chamber Music America.


Alwan's music program is made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in Partnership with the City Council.

Last updated: 2014-04-17 12:37:34

Zaid Jabri
Zaid Jabri

Alwan for the Arts

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(between Broad St. and Broadway)
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732-3261

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