Jan 12, 2018

Oud to Joy

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Aliya Cycon

By: Max Craig




Aliya Cycon has played the Nobel Prize for Business award ceremony and has performed in over 7 countries. Her instrument of choice is oud, an Arabic stringed instrument.

Aliya grew up playing and composing piano with roots in classical and jazz. Not long after turning 18 she discovered the oud on a trip to Palestine and was immediately mesmerized. Aliya’s approach to learning oud was to understand the culture before she attempted to understand the instrument. Aliya believes the most important step in musical education is respect. One must learn and honor a culture’s musical tradition and approach it with a desire to respect and learn. She believes music is the ultimate language. Music can make us feel beyond words and has the power to bring cultures closer together.

Aliya was accepted to Berklee College of Music in 2012 where she connected with a faculty oud player. In addition to music, she majored in Contemporary Writing which strengthened her arranging skills.

Not long after school came the Aliya Cycon Project, born from a passion for oud performance and composition. Prayer is a staggering 25-musician album of all original compositions and arrangements.

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