R i h a b


Copyright © 2019 Rihab Azar. All Rights Reserved.

​Rihab was born in the Syrian city, Homs to a musical family. Her father, luthier Samir Azar made her first oud and started teaching her when she was 7 years old.

She continued her musical quest later at the Conservatoire of Damascus and was taught by masters of the oud in Syria including Prof. Askar Ali Akbar, Issam Rafea, Mohamad Osman and Ayman Aljesry.

                                            The influences at the Conservatoire included

                                            Azerbaijani, Arabic, Turkish and Western

                                            classical music which allowed Rihab an

                                            understanding and practice of various genres.

                                            In 2014, She became the first woman oudist to

                                            perform accompanied by the Syrian National

                                            Orchestra for Arabic Music. The same year marked

                                            her graduation and starting as a teacher’s

                                            assistant for music theory subject at the

                                            Conservatoire of Damascus.

                                            Rihab was the oud player of the "Syrian

                                            Female Oriental Takht" from 2006 until 2015,the

                                            year in which she moved to the UK, sponsored by

                                            the Foreign and Common Wealth Office, to study

                                            Music Education at University College London.

                                            Arts Council England recognised her as a musician

                                            of "Exceptional Promise" in December 2016, which

                                            allowed her to continue her professional pursuit

                                            in the UK under the “Migrant Talent” scheme.

                                            Since 2015, Rihab has performed in festivals such

                                            Greenbelt, Journeys International and she debuted

                                            her trio in Wales in September 2017.

                                            Rihab has performed at iconic spaces in the UK                                                and abroad

                                            such as the Barbican, Southbank Centre,King's                                                 Place, Wigmore Hall, Lambeth Palace,St. Paul’s                                                Cathedral,The British Museum, Victoria &                                                      Albert Museum,Imperial War Museum and at The                                                  National Museum of Denmark.

                                            Rihab toured with London Sinfonietta in autumn                                               2018 and she was selected to be amongst the                                                   musicians of the newly-formed "Third Orchestra".

                                            She is touring now with the renowned Stile Antico                                             vocal ensemble in "Songs of Longing and Exile" 

Rihab has contributed as a panelist, practitioner and social advocate to workshops held by Oxford, Cambridge, Westminster Universities and King's College London.