Master percussionist, oudist and vocalist Yinon Muallem combines iconic Jewish melodies with original compositions and arrangements.

Now living in Turkey, Yinon Muallem was born in Israel in 1968 to parents of Iraqi origin. His father, the author of a book on the Iraqi maqam, a genre developed by Jews, is a strong influence. Starting with Middle Eastern percussion, Yinon began learning the oud and composing his own music. In 2002 he moved to Istanbul and joined the Istanbul Sazendeleri Ensemble. His work synthesises influences from Turkish, Sufi, gypsy and klezmer, and even hints of Balkan and Indian music, into an exciting musical statement. He has recorded eight albums and has recently released a single, The Nine Dreams.

This concert marked the fourth Annual Memorial Day commemorating the modern exodus of more than 850,000 Jews from Arab countries and Iran, but it was also be a celebration of Israel’s thriving contemporary Middle Eastern musical scene. 

For this special Funky Dervish performance, Shirley Smart (Cello), Joe Browne (Tenor & Alto Sax), and Vasilis Sarikis (Percussion) joined Yinon Muallem to present a night of fusion between instruments, cultures and musical styles. Israeli ambassador to the UK, HE Mark Regev, spoke at the event.

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