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55 minutes
First broadcast:
Saturday 21 August 2010

Iconic Iraqi singer and guitarist Ilham Al Madfai 2010 brings his typical fusion of Arabic and Western music to the the Royal Albert Hall in London. One of the most popular musicians in his native country since the 1970s, Ilham's renown has spread across the Middle East and beyond in the last decade or so.

lham started out as something of an enfant terrible, brining cover versions of the Beatles and other Western pop bands to Iraq, then gradually incorporated more and more traditional Arabic music into his work, eventually becoming a musical symbol of Iraq’s turbulent fate.

Ilham is also keen to pass on his great musical experience to the young generation: so he is joined by his protege Khyam Allami, a young virtuoso on the oud, the classic Middle-Eastern lute.

Ilham Al Madfai guitar/vocalist
Khyam Allami oud
Saro Kevorkian drum kit
Faisal Ghazi Dawood oriental percussion
Andrea Piccioni percussion
Omar Bashir oud
Azad Omar Mohammed ney
Jamil Al Asadi qanoon
Walid Kamel oriental percussion
Luca Scansani electric bass

World Service Broadcast programme:
Bien El Asir
Maqam Al-Khanabat
Mohammed Ya Mohammed
Chal Chal Alayea el Rumman

Introduced by Fiona Talkington and Liliane Daoud from the BBC Arabic Service


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