Oct. 25/2022

Amman Chamber Orchestra

Ihab Jamal – Violin
Jana Semaan – Cello
Karim Said – Piano

Baabdath- The New Church
Tuesday October 25, 2022
8 p.m.

No Reservations/No Tickets
First come first seated
Age limit: Above 7 years old
Doors Open at 7:15 p.m.


L.V. BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
Piano Trio in D major, Op.70 No.1 “Ghost”

Allegro vivace e con brio
Largo assai ed espressivo

F. MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847)
Piano Trio no. 2 in C minor op. 66

Allegro energico e con fuoco
Andante espressivo
Scherzo: Molto allegro quasi presto
Finale: Allegro appassionato



Born to a musical family in Lebanon, he first began learning the violin at home at the age of 6 with his father and then at the Lebanese Higher National Conservatory of Music with Professor Arthur Ter-Hovhannisyan. He completed his studies in the Yerevan State Conservatory (Armenia) with a Master’s degree.

As an orchestral musician, Ihab has toured internationally at such venues as La Scala in Milan, Musikverein in Vienna, Salle Pleyel in Paris, the Berlin Philharmonic Hall, the Royal Albert Hall in London, the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, KKL in Lucerne and the Salzburg Festival House.

As a soloist, Ihab was awarded the 1st prize at the International Competition of the Renaissance Festival in 2015 (Gyumri, Armenia) the 3rd prize at the Hrach Bogdnayan International Violin Festival in 2015 (Yerevan, Armenia) and the 1st prize at the Margot Babikian Chamber Music Competition in 2010 (Beirut, Lebanon). Furthermore, he was the only Lebanese violinist to participate in the Aram Khachaturian International Violin Competition in 2015. His solo appearances include the Khachaturian, Tchaikovsky and Mendelssohn violin concertos with the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra and with the Vologda Chamber Orchestra on a Russian tour, as well as the Seasons Chamber Orchestra in Moscow.

Ihab has performed extensively as a recitalist at such festivals and venues as ‘Les Musicales de Baabdath’ (Lebanon), the Beirut Chants Festival (Lebanon), the Yaroslavl Philharmonic Hall and the Rybinsk Cultural Centre, both in Russia.

Ihab is also an accomplished Middle Eastern music violinist and arranger-composer, with broad experience of performing and recording traditional and popular Arabic music.

Currently, Ihab is Head of Chamber Music and Orchestral Training at the Amman Institute for Performing Arts.

He is one of the concert masters of the Amman Chamber Orchestra (ACO). a pan-Arab initiative based in Amman to form a hub for regional talent in classical music. He established the ACO Trio in Amman with the orchestra’s principal conductor Karim Said (piano) and Jana Semaan (leader of the cello section).


In 2016, Jana received her Master’s degree with distinction in Early Music/Baroque Cello from the State University for Music and Performing Arts in Stuttgart, Germany (class of Jonathan Pešek). She was subsequently appointed as a tutor at the university’s Early Music Department. During her studies, Jana participated in masterclasses with renowned musicians such as Yo-Yo Ma, Dame Emma Kirkby and Conradin Brotbek.

Pedagogical activities include a position as a lecturer at the Université Saint-Esprit de Kaslik and the Antonine University in Lebanon, where she also founded the first centre for Early Music in the region in 2018.

As a solo cellist and orchestral musician, Jana has performed with the prestigious Academy Orchestra at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan and at internationally-renowned concert halls including London’s Royal Albert Hall, Berlin’s Staatsoper, Lucerne’s KKL, the Salzburg Festival House as well as major venues in the Far East and South America.

Jana is a long-term member of the Café International Baroque Orchestra in Germany and co-founder of the German-Lebanese Artists Society.

As a soloist and recitalist she has performed at venues including Fruchtkasten in Stuttgart, Royal College in London, Staatsoper in Berlin, Maison Heinrich Heine in Paris,  the American University of Beirut, Les Musicales de Baabdath, Beirut Chants and at the International Baalbeck Festival.

Her recording project of the complete Toccatas by F.P. Scipriani (1678-1753) is a part of a research initiative to bring to the public lesser-known cello repertoire through historically informed performance practice. She is a recording artist on the Redbooth label in Lebanon, with whom she released Naji Hakim’s premiere ‘Aria’ for four cellos in 2021.

Currently, Jana is Head of Strings at the Amman Institute for Performing Arts.

She is one of the permanent section leaders of the Amman Chamber Orchestra (ACO). a pan-Arab initiative based in Amman to form a hub for regional talent in classical music. She established the ACO Trio in Amman with the orchestra’s principal conductor Karim Said (piano) and Ihab Jamal (co-concert master).


‘He shares Sviatoslav Richter’s incisively effortless octave technique and knack for gradually meting out rubato in the manner of a seasoned conductor’ – Gramophone Magazine

Hailed as a ‘born communicator’ by the Independent, Karim Said came to the public’s attention in 2009 playing concertos with the English Chamber Orchestra under the late Sir Colin Davis (Barbican Centre, London) and at the BBC Proms (Royal Albert Hall, London).

Karim Said was born in Amman, Jordan in 1988 where he commenced his piano studies with Georgian-Iraqi teacher Agnes Bashir-Dzodtsoeva. He moved to the UK in 2000, aged eleven, to study piano, composition and conducting at the renowned Purcell School of Music and later at the Royal Academy of Music, both on full scholarships. At the Royal Academy of Music he studied with Prof. Tatiana Sarkissova. His development as a student throughout his time at the Purcell School is documented in Christopher Nupen’s film ‘Karim’s Journey’, which was broadcast on the UK’s BBC4, and in five other countries, in 2008.

 Karim Said was made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music, London in 2017.

As a soloist with orchestra, he has toured regularly performing at such halls as the Philharmonie in Berlin, Musikverein in Vienna, the Great Hall of the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, the Pierre Boulez Saal in Berlin, the Musashino Concert Hall in Tokyo and at the Dubai Opera House.

Karim’s album Legacy was released on Rubicon Classics (UK) in November 2018. It received 5 Stars for interpretation and repertoire on West German Radio (WDR) and was described by Nicholas Kenyon in the Guardian/Observer as a programme ‘dispatched with intelligence and grace.’ This followed the success of his debut album Echoes from an Empire’ (Opus Arte – 2015) which was one of Gramphone’s ‘Top Ten recordings of Janacek’ in 2016. The repertoire on his first album was inspired by his London recital debut series at the Southbank Centre in 2013, where he covered Arnold Schoenberg’s complete published solo works over three recitals as part of the ‘International Piano Series’ and ‘The Rest Is Noise’ festival.

Karim Said is equally at home performing chamber music and working with actors. Past events have included collaborative performances with such stage directors as the late Patrice Chereau and Vanessa Redgrave, as well as chamber music performances with Waltraud Meier, Dorothea Röschmann, Gabriel Croitoru, Adrian Brendel and the Utrecht String Quartet.

Karim Said is Director of Music at the Amman Institute for Performing Arts.

He is the founding director of the Amman Chamber Orchestra (ACO), a pan-Arab initiative based in Amman to form a hub for regional talent in classical music. He established the ACO Trio in Amman with the orchestra’s permanent leaders Ihab Jamal (co-concert master) and Jana Semaan (cello).