Students shine at Performing Arts recital

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Mohammed Adnan, Asst. Prof. Albert Agha, and Utkarsh Chauhan onstage during the March 23 event (SHAIKHA MAJID PHOTO)

By Shaikha Majid 

UNIVERSITY CITY, SHARJAH – A mix of singers and oud players performed March 23 at the spring 2022 second and final recital presented by the American University of Sharjah’s Performing Arts Program. 

The event began at 5 p.m. in the Arts Rotunda where students Joshua Thomas and Aqila Munadhila opened the session with the Italian opera song Caro Mio Ben. 

“I loved that I got the opportunity to perform in the recital,” said Thomas. “Being able to share a small part of me with the world was a truly groundbreaking experience and one that I will treasure for the rest of my life.”

Munadhila called the experience enlightening, adding that it gave her the courage to perform in upcoming events. 

Assistant Professor Albert Agha led his oud students in Longa Nahawand, a Turkish instrumental from the Ottoman period. “It was composed by a female composer by the name of Kemani Havnem, and is very popular for oud players,” he said. 

Agha added that the purpose of holding a recital every semester is to demonstrate what students have been working on with their instructors. “In the program, we have private music students in instrumental or vocal performance that are featured in these recitals,” he said. 

Agha said that the most difficult challenge facing them was finding time taken to practice. “The piece [Longa Nahawand] is usually for second or third-year students on the oud,” he said. “However, the students we featured this semester had only been studying for less than a year and they had to practice a lot in order to perform it.”

Agha said that the recital allows them to show their progress to others and get the chance to perform in front of an audience.