Esplanade Presents

Workshop | Music

Workshop: Music of the Middle East: Exploring Persian, Arabic & Turkish traditions led by Michael Pignéguy

(Iran, Lebanon, Australia)

30 Sep 2023, Sat, 2pm

1hr 30mins

(Intermission: None)

Esplanade Bay Room

This event is over.


In this workshop, participants will learn a range of skills that will enable them to explore some of the essential elements of authentic Middle Eastern music. This workshop entails:

  • Live demonstration  
  • Hands-on activities 
  • Basic, traditional music notation 


This workshop is recommended for: 

  • Musicians who already play Middle Eastern music; 
  • Musicians who are not familiar with Middle Eastern music, but are interested to learn; and 
  • People who have no background in music but are curious about Middle Eastern music and would like to observe the workshop. 
  • Limited capacity.

  • Priority will be given to musicians who are able to bring their own hand percussion instruments, like tambourines, djembes and other suitable Middle Eastern instruments. 

Admission Age:
10 and above.
Language: English
Things to Note:
Accessibility Advisory: We provide a range of access services and relaxed performances for patrons with access needs. For wheelchair-accessible seats, please call Esplanade Customer Experience at 6828 8377 for assistance. Concessions for Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) and up to one accompanying companion are available. | View our accessibility guide
Artist Information

Michael Pignéguy

Instagram | YouTube

Leader of The Awakenings Ensemble, Michael Pignéguy is a composer and performer who has worked extensively within the fields of jazz, orchestral and world music. He balances commissions by orchestras from around the world with his own projects which have seen him perform in USA, Italy, Australia, Africa, Malaysia, Singapore, The United Arab Emirates, Qatar and New Zealand. He also leads world music act The Awakenings Ensemble in performances in USA (Jazz at Lincoln Center), the Middle East, Asia and around Australia.

Mohammed Edelby

Mohammed was born and raised in the vibrant city of Beirut, Lebanon, where his profound passion for music took root. Starting with the trombone at a tender age, he soon fell in love with the mesmerising tones of the Oud at 13. This led him to the esteemed halls of the Conservatoire of Music in Beirut, where he honed his craft.


Over the years, Mohammed has graced the stage alongside renowned Lebanese vocalists and in addition has earned the distinguished Army Appreciation Award for his heartfelt performances for the Lebanese Armed Forces. In 2014, he embarked on a new musical journey in Perth, Australia, collaborating with diverse world music ensembles in Western Australia.


Mohammed's mission is to enchant audiences with the enchanting sounds of Middle Eastern music, masterfully expressed through his skillful Oud playing.

Esfandiar Shamir

Esfandiar Shahmir is a world class ney and daf player. Born in Tehran (Iran) Esfandiar originally studied theatre and developed a love of Persian music. This led him to form a band with singer, poet and composer Parvaz Homay which became the renowned Persian music ensemble, Homay & Mastan. Since 2004, Esfandiar has recorded many albums with this ensemble and toured around Iran and internationally including Canada, the USA, Europe and Africa. Esfandiar has also performed with UNESCO award winning Azerbaijani musician, Alim Qasimov.

Steve Richter

Steve Richter is an Australian freelance musician who has been highly active in Western Australian’s arts scene for the past 25 years. He has diverse performance and composition experience, and plays regularly as a multi-instrumentalist (percussion, electronics, vibraphone, drums, keyboards and Latin percussion) having performed approximately 3,500 shows in multiple countries—encompassing world music, pop, orchestral, rock, and his own compositions and improvisations.


Steve has performed with the Perth Symphony, Synergy, Christine Anu, Yothu Yindi, Greg Sheehan and the WA Symphony amongst others.

Date & Time

30 Sep 2023, Sat


Esplanade Bay Room

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