Ahmed Moneka Arabic jazz
Wednesday, April 17, 2024 | 7:30pm
Hermann's Jazz Club
753 View St., Victoria, BC V8W 1J9
Moneka Arabic Jazz is a project reflecting the life and artistic journey of its founder, Ahmed, from Baghdad to Toronto. It showcases melodies from his homeland, Iraq, interwoven with the African groove and rhythms inherited from the Moneka Family.
Ahmed often draws inspiration for songwriting from extensive research into stories from Iraq and contemporary local and global realities. Having arrived in Toronto, Canada, his aim is to share this rich heritage and traditions with local musicians. Jazz and blues emerge as the ideal genres for bridging his Afro-Arabic background with the captivating musical diversity of Toronto’s rich multicultural landscape.
Ahmed Moneka - Vocals
Max Sennit - Drums
Majd Sekkar - Clarinet
Waleed Abdulhamid - Bass
Demetri Petsalakia - Guitar, Oud
Fethi Nadjem - Violin
Artist Website: https://ahmedmoneka.com/music/
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Ahmed Moneka is a multi-talented artist from Baghdad, Iraq, with specializations in acting, music, and writing. As an Afro-Iraqi, he has a deep connection to his roots and culture, which he honours and preserves through his work. Ahmed’s artistic projects revolve around togetherness and harmony, which he believes are the core values of every endeavour he’s been a part of. His unique background and diverse skill set allow him to bring a fresh perspective to Canada’s entertainment industry.
Ahmed’s personal experiences in Iraq and his journey as a refugee seeking asylum in Canada eight years ago strongly influenced his art. He is passionate about telling stories of human struggle and freedom and using his art to promote human rights, love, peace, and acceptance. Ahmed believes in connecting cultures to create a “global community” and counter the negative, stereotypical perspective towards Middle Eastern culture.
He is the creator and leader of Moneka Arabic Jazz – one of the 2019 Stingray Rising Stars finalists at the Toronto Jazz Festival. And the Winner of the 2022 Stingray Rising in Mundial Montreal
the co-founder of the band Moskitto Bar and member of Kuné.
Waleed Abdulhamid – bass guitar, vocals. Waleed was born in Sudan and began performing at the age of 6. He toured across his country, as well as Egypt, Syria, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. Waleed is known for bringing traditional rhythms into popular music in Sudan.
Demetri Petsalakis – guitar, oud. From, Greece, Demetri Petsalakis performs on Greek and Middle Eastern lutes. A busy freelancer, Demetri performs with world music groups and orchestras and holds a Master of Music degree in jazz guitar and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in music from York University.
Fathi Najem – electric violin, kora. Fathi began his musical journey in Algeria, learning Arabic violin. World music collaborations there introduced him to the kora which he plays in a variety of world music contexts.
Max Sennitt – Drum Kit. Max is one of Toronto’s most in demand drum kit players who mixes Jazz and Funk easily with traditional music.