Damascus-Berlin: An encounter between classical Arabic and classical Western music when we talk about the collaboration between Nabil Hilaneh (oud) and Maria Magdalena Wiesmaier (cello) in their project ‘The Incense of Music Nr. 10’.
The Berlin cellist Maria Magdalena Wiesmaier and the oud player from Damascus Nabil Hilaneh come together to explore the interaction between their two musical worlds: the Arabic tradition that is based on melody and improvisation and the classical Western tradition that favours harmony and is thoroughly written down.
One system uses 12 tones and the other uses more, as Arabic music also makes use of quarter tones. The tension between these two worlds is the playing field where Maria and Nabil find their language.
The duo’s work comes about as a dialogue between the musicians’ unique backgrounds. Inspiration for Nabil is the oud master Munir Bashir (1930-1997), who studied in Hungary and condensed the Arabic traditional music in an intense, meditative way, and making savvy use of silence. Maria embraces the Western tradition—from the Baroque to contemporary music, like the Hungarian composer György Kurtág (1926-). Together Maria and Nabil are moving from the maqamat (the Arabic melodic modes) towards their own, new and timely music.
The Incense of Music Nr. 10 LIVE
Friday, 24th February 2017 | 20:00 CET
Roter Salon | Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz | 10178 Berlin-Mitte