Music in Palestine Pre-1948 | Nader Jalal

Sonic Club

Nader Jalal, Shayma Nader.

5 PM - 7 PM

Museum of Impossible Forms warmly welcomes Nader Jalal, founder and lead researcher of the Palestinian Institute for Cultural Development – Nawa based in Ramallah, Palestine. Established in 2004, Nawa’s focuses on the musical heritage of Palestinians through research, collection, publications, audio productions, and preservation, building one of the most important archives of its kind.

In this presentation, Jalal will trace the diverse musical contributions of Palestine and its profound impact on the broader Arab cultural landscape before 1948 and following the Nakba. From the vibrant atmosphere of clubs and cafes to cinemas and festivals active across historical Palestine, we will explore key cultural hubs that shaped Palestinian musical heritage. We will also listen to some of the earliest vinyl records, extracts from the Palestinian Broadcasting Service - This is Jerusalem (1936-1956), and examine contemporary efforts in archiving, reviving and reproducing this musical heritage, particularly the work of NAWA through album releases, concerts, talks and educational programs. 

The lecture will be followed by a conversation between Nader Jalal, Shayma Nader and Miia Laine.


Nader Jalal is the founder and lead researcher of the Palestinian Institute for Cultural Development – Nawa. Nawa’s prime research focuses on the musical renaissance in Palestine during the first half of the 20th century, building an archive of Palestinian classical music and reproducing the compositions of forgotten Palestinian musicians. Jalal has previously held numerous positions in cultural management and has lectured locally and internationally on the Palestinian musical scene pre-1948.

Shayma Nader is an artist, curator and researcher from Palestine. Her research-led practice is concerned with anticolonial, antidisciplinary and land-centered imaginaries and practices.  She is currently a PhD candidate in artistic research at ARIA at Sint Lucas School of Arts (KdG) and University of Antwerp. 

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