Michigan Arab Orchestra Takht Ensemble – Qanun Taqasim / تقاسيم قانون

Music Director/Nay: Michael Ibrahim
Violin: Nady Benyamine
‘Oud: Nashwan Fadhel
Qanun: Victor Ghannam
Voice: Usama Baalbaki
Bass: Jonathan Hammonds
Percussion: Gurushuran Yash Singh Sandhu, Roger Kashou

The Michigan Arab Orchestra Takht Ensemble (MAOTE) is a classical Arab music chamber ensemble comprised of instruments such as: ‘oud (Arab Lute), qanun (Arab zither), nay (Arab reed flute), Violin, Bass, and percussion. Established in April 2010, the MAOTE includes musicians form the greater Detroit community; and performs classical and contemporary Arab music otherwise known as tarab music. Tarab music is characterized by its melodic modes known as maqāmāt (sing. maqām) and complex rhythmic modes (iqā’at). It is also distinguished by the art of improvisation, or taqāsim, during which a musician outlines a melodic mode and/or modulates to other related modes. The audience plays an extremely important role in tarab music, since listeners (sami’ah) will often respond with applause during and after a musician’s improvised solos.

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