Creative Profile: Victor Ghannam, Musician

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Victor Ghannam with his oud

Victor Ghannam is a self taught musician who has performed throughout Europe, the Middle East, North, Central, and South America on a variety of instruments, mainly the Oud and Qanun. He began his musical life at the age of 4 and was soon brought along to display his skills at many local events. A veteran of the stage, he has toured with many of the leading recording artists of the Middle East and is most recognized for his dazzling improvisational taqasim which can be romantic passion, technical brilliance, creative adventure, and intense emotion.
With a variety of performing experience and involvement in projects as diverse as Jazz fusion, Rock and Roll, Flamenco/Belly Dance choreography, among many, his versatility and ease of crossing musical genres is proven. As a session musician, he was a featured artist on many episodes of Xena, Warrior Princess, Hercules, Legendary Journeys, and most recently, the Starz network hit series Spartacus, among the most successful syndicated programs in television history.

Some video links to check out include:

National Arab Orchestra – Oud Taqasim

Victor Ghannam & Jacco Muller – Flamenco

National Arab Orchestra – Qanun Taqasim

What inspires you to create?

As for inspiration, life and everything in it has an impact on my creative juices. The love in my heart for my family, friends, and acquaintances alike really keeps me going in all ways.

Describe your greatest creative achievement?

It’s so difficult to choose one of many artistic achievements I’ve been so fortunate to have experienced. The collaborations with flamenco artists including original CD recordings, jazz artists, belly dance, world music fusion, and so on were some of many new challenges that keep me fresh as a musician. I’ve had a chance to perform in Europe, the Middle East, South America, Central America, Canada, and in 32 of the United States which was priceless in the way I grew as a person.

What advice would you give to the next generation of creative people?

I would advise the new generation of tremendously talented and gifted musicians to embrace their passion and not shy away from it. Although experience cannot be bought, be patient with yourselves. As is the case with anything, in particular being on stage, the more you do it the easier it becomes to be who you are as an artist. Also be open to all genres, unless you’re content to play one style. You can’t be a loser if you’re happy with what you are doing.

What one word would you use to describe yourself or the work you do?

One word? I would need to agonize for a year but the short answer might be – improvisator.

slide1_fotoris a series of profiles of creative people throughout the world that I have either shared the stage with or have observed their talents from a far. The questions are my own and their answers are unaltered.

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