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Enchanting Music

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This centre is dedicated to the preservation, study and teaching of the oud and other Arabic instruments
Bait Al Oud (‘bait’ means ‘house’ in Arabic) seeks to preserve the songs and techniques associated with the oud, and other important instruments in the United Arab Emirates, including the qanun, cello and rebabah, as well as Arabic singing, Emirati coral and Arabic Muwashahat. It hosts performances, offers music lessons and certificate-awarding courses in these instruments.
As a centre of both teaching and research, Bait Al Oud aims to preserve traditional Arabic music heritage and nurture a new generation of professional musicians in the UAE who are well versed in the history and repertoire of their instrument.
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HISTORY OF THE OUD

The oud is one of humankind’s oldest stringed instruments, dating back to the Akkadian Empire (approximately 2350 BCE) in ancient Mesopotamia (modern-day Iraq). One of the greatest proponents of the oud was Ziryab (777-852 CE), who was the head of singers in Andalusia (modern-day Spain). He developed the instrument and helped it to expand from the Islamic world into Europe. 


Hand-Crafted

Bait al Oud also teaches the process of making oud instruments by hand. Reflecting the instrument’s classic form, ouds produced at Bait al Oud are precision crafted to be 67cm long and 36cm wide at the sound box. The arm of each instrument is 19cm long, with a width of 4cm near the fretted end and 6cm near the sound box

Only the finest cider wood and rosewood are used, with each piece of wood assessed for its ideal placement within the instrument. This method gives a distinctive sound to the oud strings, especially for high notes and base. Careful carving and selection of wood helps provide each instrument with the precise tightness of the chords, giving more accuracy to musicians and allowing them to tune the highest notes.

Curriculum 

Formal study of oud, qanun, cello and rebabah at Bait Al Oud extends over approximately five semesters, with a teaching panel deciding on the suitability of each student’s progression to the next semester of work.
At the end of his or her course of study, each student takes part in a public concert with professional musicians. The student’s performance during the ‘Graduation Concert’ is judged by a jury of some of the most renowned masters of their instrument. 
Only after passing this final assessment is a student granted the Bait Al Oud Diploma, certifying their ability to start a career as a professional musician. 

The Introduction of Rebabah Instruction

The newest addition to Bait Al Oud’s curriculum is the instruction in rebabah, another string instrument. The institute introduced rebabah classes in September 2017 to further its mission to safeguard the musical heritage of the UAE and train the next generation of professional rebabah players.

Timeline

2008-2017

2008

Bait Al Oud is inaugurated by Oud legend, Naseer Shamma, and training in Oud and Qanoon is introduced.

2008

2012

Arabic singing is added to the programme.

2012

2016

The Bait Al Oud concert season begins with 10 concerts every year, including graduation concerts and celebration concerts featuring international performers.

2016

2017

The workshop area and store undergo complete renovation; Cello, Rebabah and Emirati singing are added to programme.

2017

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Did You Know ?

Famous Arab philosophers and scientists, including Al-Farabi, Al-Kindi and lbn Sina, developed their theories of music using the oud. 

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360 walkthrough

Bait Al Oud

3600

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Location Details

Address

Villa No 72, Malqatah Street, Al Nahyan
Abu Dhabi

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