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An Evening of Mizrahi Music

  • Jewish Community Library 1835 Ellis Street San Francisco, CA, 94115 (map)

Oud player John Erlich, accompanied by violinist Be'eri Moalem and percussionist Bouchaib Abdelhadi, will lead us on a journey through the world of Mizraḥi Jewish music, performing pizmonim (songs of praise) and piyyutim (liturgical songs) from Iraq, Israel, Morocco, and Egypt.

John Erlich (oud and vocals) is former musical director of the Middle Eastern Jewish ensembles Za'atar (1997-2008) and Safra (2012-2016).  He was a jazz guitarist/composer before turning his attention to Middle Eastern music in the mid-1990s, inspired by a year spent living in northern Israel.  John has also performed with Estreya D'Oro and Bayat Ensemble and recorded with Cantor Richard Kaplan.  He studied oud with Naser Musa, Haig Manoukian, and Necati Çelik, and now teaches oud privately.

Violist, violinist, and composer Be'eri Moalem (violin) plays in classical, Middle Eastern, and Klezmer styles. He studied performance at the San Francisco Conservatory and composition at San Jose State University. Moalem’s specialty is blending different genres and forms of music. Originally from Israel, he now resides in Palo Alto.

Bouchaib Abdelhadi (percussion and background vocals), originally from Casablanca, Morocco, performed as the leader of Orchestre Abdelhadi until moving to the United States in the 1990s. Abdelhadi now plays in multiple Middle Eastern and North African musical traditions including al-Ÿqa (Andalusian), Gnawa (Sufi trance), and Chaabi ("popular"). He has collaborated with Alonzo King, Omar Sosa, and Stephen Kent (with Trance Mission). Abdelhadi is a member of the Naqshbandi Sufi Order.

Co-presented by JIMENA: Jews Indigenous to the Middle East and North Africa.