Who are we?
The Andalus Arabic Choir was established in 2013 and is a non-for-profit multicultural Australian organisation formed to promote Arabic heritage, art, music and culture. Members of the Andalus Arabic Choir meet regularly to sing and socialise. They include male and female Sydneysiders of Arabic origin in addition to Australians of other ethnic backgrounds. The songs are in Arabic; non-Arabic singers are provided transliterated text of the lyrics. Children are accepted, only if accompanied by a parent. Our director, and soprano vocalist masters singing the quarter note feature in Arabic music and aims to pass it on to younger generations.
A message from the Director
“Andalus” (Andalucia in Spanish), refers to a large part of Spain and Portugal between 711-1492 AD. During this time Andalusian Spain witnessed a multicultural fusion between Africa, the East and the West as well as among Christians, Muslims and Jews. “Andalusian music” became the courtly music of medieval Spain. Preserved and developed by its descendants around the Mediterranean, it is considered one of the longest continuous traditions of art music in the world.
The Andalus Arabic Choir reflects the vibrant, creative, multicultural and tolerant era of Andalucia. We sing Arabic and Andalusian songs in various dialects from Andalucia to the Middle-East crossing North Africa. Our repertoire includes other genres of music: traditional, folk, pop, fusion and original songs.
I aim through my artistic vision to connect with the Australian society by producing fascinating music and songs put to live in enchanting performances at cultural events engaging local musicians and artists from various backgrounds. I encourage community members, regardless of their background to contribute to Australia’s vibrant cultural life and activities.
Our community is thirsty to find connections between cultures especially in music. When we perform, this becomes real; the stage transports you to a magical ambiance where poetry, music, religion and identity are so much amalgamated to the point where language does not matter anymore, the music takes over. “It is a remedy for the soul”.
The quarter note (½ flat; ½ sharp) featured in the Arabic music is enchanting, mesmerising and very much treasured by those who are familiar with it. As a soprano vocalist and having mastered singing quarter notes and embellishments for decades in various Arabic maqamat, I aspire to introduce this feature to the youngsters and to those of western background who did not have a chance to experience it. This is a whole new educational experience to get them to hear it and sing it accurately. This challenge stimulates the brain and senses. The results are very fulfilling to me and to those who are learning it.
As director of the Andalus Arabic Choir and producer of its shows, I pursue an artistic creative vision in our performances to interact with people in the same way music interacts with our souls. I also look forward to collaborate with other types of world music and explore new territories while keeping true to our heritage music and promoting it.