EUME Berliner Seminar
Wed 07 Jul 2021 | 17:00–18:30

Jazz Conceptions in Classical Arabic

Tarek Yamani (Composer and Jazz Pianist) in conversation with Diana Abbani (EUME Fellow of the Fritz Thyssen Foundation 2020/21)

In cooperation with AL.Berlin

Tarek Yamani
Tarek Yamani

In this conversation, Diana Abbani aims to discuss with Tarek Yamani how he found his voice in the jazz language. From Ashur and Lisan Al Tarab where Yamani explored classical Arabic music within the framework of Black American Music, to Peninsular where he researched and wrote new music based on the largely unexplored rhythms of the Arabian Peninsula, Yamani keeps on digging deep into the history of different music genres to explore new boundaries and sounds. This discussion examines how Yamani followed different musical routes through the Atlantic and the Persian Gulf and delved into Arab and Black musical heritages and stories.

Born and raised in Beirut, Tarek is a pianist and composer who taught himself jazz at the age of 19. He has been exploring crossroads between Black American and Arabic music, most evident in his second album "Lisan Al Tarab: Jazz Conceptions in Classical Arabic", and in his 3rd release “Peninsular” which fuses jazz with quarter-tones and Arabian Peninsula rhythms. A recipient of many prestigious awards such as the Thelonious Monk Jazz Composers Competition, the Baryshnikov Artist-in-Residence, the Huygens Scholarship, and the Abu Dhabi Festival Commission, Tarek has recently been commissioned by the UMS Digital Artist Residency to write a new piece for multi-Grammy nominated Spektral Quartet.Tarek has been part of three editions of the International Jazz Day all-star concerts and performed in venues such as the Smithsonian (DC), Barcelona Cathedral at La Merce, Atrium at Lincoln Center (NYC), Boulez Saal (Berlin), MuCEM (Marseille), the UN Assembly Hall (NYC), Aaron Davis Hall, Melbourne Arts Center, Sejong Center for the Arts (Seoul), and Gran Teatro de la Habana (Cuba) to name a few. Tarek is also an educator, author of two self-published music books on rhythm and a film score composer of films screened in 100+ festivals around the world and broadcasted on AMC network, BBC and Sundance TV.

Diana Abbani received her doctorate in Arabic Studies from Sorbonne University with a thesis entitled “Music and Society in Beirut at the Time of the Nahda”. She holds double masters in History and Political Science from Sorbonne University and the University of Saint Denis in Paris. She is currently preparing a book that focuses on the Levant’s social history in the first half of the 20th century. In her research, she examines the implications of social, political and technological changes, as well as the emergence of the music industry and the entertainment world, on music and Levantine society. In her study, she focuses on alternative narratives, uncovering the forgotten stories of people who were affected by the sound transition and revisiting the experiences of those marginalized by official narratives. Diana was a EUME Fellow during the academic years 2018/19 and 2019/20. In the academic year 2020/21, Diana is a EUME Fellow of the Fritz Thyssen Foundation. She is associated with the Friedrich Schlegel Graduate School of Literary Studies at Freie Universität Berlin.

The conversation will take place at and in cooperation with AL.Berlin. An on-site attendance will be available only for a limited number of pre-registered participants. The conversation will be broadcasted via Zoom. Please register in advance via eume(at) to receive the login details. Depending on approval by the speakers, the Berliner Seminar will be recorded. All audio recordings of the Berliner Seminar are available via the account of the Forum Transregionale Studien on Soundcloud.

ICS Export

All events