Ahmed Mukhtar

28th February 2023

The Auditorium at St John’s College, Oxford

Born in Baghdad, Mukhtar has been playing the oud (Arabic lute) and Arabic percussions since 1979. He has worked with many folk music groups and musicians in the city. In 1983, he began studying both the oud and percussion at the Institute of Fine Arts in Baghdad with the Masters Ghanim Haddad and Jameel Jerjis. In 1985, Mukhtar began working with Arabic orchestras and performing on Iraqi TV with a variety of Iraqi groups. A few years later, in 1990 he attended the High Institute of Music in Damascus where he continued his studies of the oud and Western percussions. In 1999, Mukhtar earned an MA from the London College of Music, and in 2003, he received a Masters Degree in Performance with a focus on Middle-Eastern and Arabic music from SOAS (the School of Oriental and African Studies), London.

He is currently teaching oud, percussion and Arabic music theory in many institutes around London including SOAS, the University of London, and the Taqasim Music School. This is in addition to working as the Musical Programs Director for Al-Fayha, an Iraqi television channel.

This concert took place at St John’s College on 28th February. It was the second event of our 2022-2023 series, and was our first concert since the pandemic back in our beautiful Auditorium at St John’s College. Enjoy the concert in full below!

Dvi Doli

24th November 2022

The Barn at St John’s College, Oxford

Our first concert of our 2022-2023 season, and our first in-person event since the COVID-19 pandemic, was with Ukrainian bandura duo Dvi Doli.

Dvi Doli is made up of classically trained professional musicians Julia Kogut-Kalynyuk and Kateryna Trachuk from Lviv, Ukraine. The duo specialises in traditional Ukrainian folk music. They arrived in Oxford in May 2022, after fleeing Russia’s war in Ukraine. 

Music has always been a huge part of the duo’s life. They began playing the bandura (a Ukrainian plucked string folk instrument) at the ages of 5 and 9, and then obtained Master’s degrees in bandura and voice at Lviv National Music Academy, named after Mykola Lysenko, Ukraine’s leading musical conservatory. They have toured in Poland, the Netherlands, Germany, Canada, and Spain and look forward to sharing their love for Ukrainian traditional folk music with audiences across the UK.

The concert took place on 24th November 2022. If you weren’t able to catch the concert, you can watch the entire thing again below!