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Middle East and Central Asia Forum




All welcome and admission is free but advance registration is requested for planning purposes.

In conjunction with the Institute of Musical Research.

For more information on this event, please contact Laudan Nooshin (

The forum is being run in conjunction with the one-day conference 'Music, Technology and Digital Cultures in the Middle East and North Africa’, on Tuesday 23rd May. Please sign up separately if you wish to attend both events.


9.30am Registration and Welcome

Session 1, 9.45-11.15am

  • Julian Harris (King’s College London): 'Ta'abiriya /“Expressionism": Composing for the Oud from an Iraqi Perspective’
  • Rachel Pakbaz (University of Cambridge): 'William Daniel’s Nationalist Music and the Preservation of the Assyrian Cultural Heritage'

11.15 –11:35am, Tea/Coffee

Session 2, 11:35am-1pm

  • Shayna Silverstein (Northwestern University): 'Embodying Saltanah: Intercorporeality, Flow, and Selfhood in Syrian Dabke’
  • Gabrielle Messeder (City, University of London): ‘YouTube Battleground: Revolutionary and Counter-Revolutionary Songs of the Syrian Civil War'

Lunch (not provided) 1-2pm

Session 3  2-3.30pm

Roundtable Disucssion: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Studying Music in Situations of Conflict and Violence: Perspectives from the Middle East

  • Tom Parkinson (Royal Holloway, University of London)
  • Abigail Wood (University of Haifa)
  • Laudan Nooshin (City, University of London)

3.30-4pm Tea/Coffee

Session 4, 4-5.30pm

  • Maria Rijo Lopes da Cunha (SOAS): 'Between the ‘Colours of Enchantment’ and the Shadow of Nostalgia: Revival and Innovation in Contemporary Lebanese Music Tradition'
  • Mu Qian (SOAS): 'Pulled by God - Sounds, Movements and Meanings in the Uyghur Hälqä-Söhbät Ritual'

At 7pm there is a Concert by the Maya Youssef Trio, presented as part of the City Summer Sounds Music Festival. If you wish to attend the concert, please sign up separately.

The Middle East and Central Asia Music Forum has been running since 2007 and is open to researchers, students and anyone interested in the music and culture of the region. In the spirit of fostering dialogue and interdisciplinarity, we hope that the issues discussed at the forum will be of interest to a broad audience, including musicologists, ethnomusicologists and other researchers in the arts, humanities and social sciences. In addition, we welcome those working on other aspects of Middle Eastern and Central Asian culture broadly speaking (dance, visual arts, media, film, literature, etc.)

The Forum is convened by Dr Laudan Nooshin, City, University of London ( and Dr Rachel Harris, SOAS, University of London (

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When and where

9.30am - 5.45pmMonday 22nd May 2017

AG09 College Building City, University of London St John Street London EC1V 4PB United Kingdom

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Middle East and Central Asia Music Forum - May 2017

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