A Musical Journey from Greece to Kurdistan

Wednesday, April 12, 2017 - 18:15

A musical event with renowned Kurdish Daf player Hajar Zahawi brought together musicians from Greece and Kurdistan in a two-day workshop and concert held at the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani.

The workshop, held on Monday, April 3rd, was led by internationally acclaimed Greek musicians Dr. Matthaios Tsachouridis and Dr. Konstantinos Tsachouridis. The workshop was facilitated and translated by Hajar Zahawi, and focused on explaining the roots of Greek music and how it varies based on the geography of the country, with an introduction to Greek instruments. It was attended in large numbers by aspiring students from the Fine Arts department at the University of Sulaimani and the Oriental Music Club at AUIS. The musicians also gave demonstrations during their talk, and allowed students the opportunity to play the traditional Greek instrument, the Lyra Pontos, which they later gifted to their friend Hajar Zahawi.

AUIS invited members of the community, students and staff to enjoy a concert featuring a blend of Greek and Kurdish music on campus on April 4th. Renowned Kurdish artists Hajar Zahawy, Ertan Takin, and Ayub Ali joined the Greek trio Konstantinos Tsachouridis, Giannis Poulios, and Matthaios Tsachouridis to play in front of packed auditorium at AUIS. The concert lasted well over two hours and was greatly enjoyed by the audience.
The Tsachouridis brothers were born in Greece, and both hold a doctorate in the field of Performance Practice. Zahawi and the Tsachouridis brothers met and became friends as university students in the UK. Zahawi has previously performed in Greece, and recently gave a performance with the Tsachouridis brothers at TEDx Nishtiman in Erbil. Together, they share a great passion for music and to bringing cultures together through their performance. In the last two years, Hajar Zahawy has performed and given various music workshops at AUIS. He plans to continue running workshop sessions for aspiring young musicians every semester, with the hope of starting up a music school at the University in future. 
Watch the concert video below.