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Christiane Karam

Christiane Karam


Born and raised in war-torn Beirut, Lebanon, Christiane Karam’s unique vocal style stems from her love for different musical traditions. She is the leader and founder of the award-winning ZilZALA Ensemble, which blends classical, traditional, and folk music from different regions of the Middle East and the Balkans with contemporary jazz. She has taught and performed around the world, and collaborated with the likes of Yanka Rupkina, Tigran Hamasyan, Hüsnü Şenlendirici, Javier Limon, the Assad Brothers, Binka Dobreva, Javier Limon, and Bobby McFerrin, at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Summerstage, Symphony Space, and Teatro National. She appeared in the 2009 PBS documentary film The Music Instinct: Science and Song, featuring Bobby McFerrin, Daniel Levitin, Oliver Sacks, Daniel Barenboim, and Yo-Yo Ma, and has also been featured on VH1.

In addition to coaching and performing, Christiane is an award-winning songwriter and the founder and leader of both the Pletenitsa Balkan Choir and the Berklee Middle Eastern Festival. She is also the director of the Berklee Annual International Folk Festival. Her latest project, NAR, with the Christiane Karam Quintet, was released in January 2022 to rave reviews, and strives to explore human connection and the journey of healing darkness and separation, while celebrating the exuberance and depth of the vast array of musical traditions she comes from. She is also a published author. Her book Of Broken Pieces and Light Ahead, a mix of poetry and prose which speaks to the resilience of the human spirit, was released in May 2022.

Christiane is currently on the faculty of Berklee College of Music, where she continues her work of bringing awareness and positive social change through music and the arts. As a holistic practitioner, she is committed to promoting wellness and balance through various mind-body practices.