A Project using the Arabic scale

Background to Arabic music
There are around forty melodic modes (maqam) in use in Egypt and twenty in other parts of the arabic world. The most basic rhythm in use is the rajaz, which imitates the sound of camel hooves in the sand

The project
Introduce the Arabic scale through appropriate notation, and ask the pupils to play the scale on any instrument. Singing it may be difficult due to the Augmented 2nds in the melody.

The Arabic Scale

 Divide pupils up into groups of 3 or 4. One pupil can play a drone consisting of the C and G played to the rajaz rhythm

Rajaz rhythm

 Each pupil should now make up a short phrase using the notes of the scale. Once they have all made up a melody, they can collaborate their ideas so that one phrase answers another. The melodies can be repeated as ostinatos if necessary. There are many possible variations to this idea. This is just one idea!

Arrangement index

This page is taken from the Music Teacher's Resource Site