Joseph Tawadros is one of Australian music’s most impressive and charismatic figures: a composer, improviser, storyteller and brilliant exponent of the oud: the Egyptian lute.
Classically trained on this king of Middle Eastern instruments, Tawadros’s virtuoso technique and curiosity have brought him into contact with the worlds of jazz, classical and world traditions to create music that transcends labels and shatters borders.
The almost telepathic rapport with his brother James playing percussion on the Req – an Egyptian tambourine and the Bendir – a frame-drum, often leads to moments of joyous spontaneous invention, making their performances true musical events.
Past collaborations have ranged from the Australian Chamber Orchestra to Zakir Hussain, from Neil Finn and Katie Noonan to Jack DeJohnette and Bela Fleck.
Music critic in the SMH, John Shand wrote of a recent performance: ‘Tawadros is not averse to showmanship … but that tendency was completely overridden by his profound instinct for making music that is a mirror of truth; a bridge between his heart and mind and those of his listeners. …each time he returned to the oud he produced … solos of thrilling intensity, spectacular beauty and unnerving emotion’.