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Folk Music and Strings of Culture

Max ZT, hammered dulcimer musician
Max ZT, hammered dulcimer player.

Join internationally acclaimed musician Max ZT, who has been dubbed the “Jimi Hendrix of hammered dulcimer” by NPR. Having studied under the great Santoor master Pandit Shivkumar Sharma, he has been schooled in traditional Indian folk music from which he draws extensively for his compositions. The performance-demonstration will feature the hammered dulcimer, an instrument traditionally held to have been invented in Iran/Persia roughly 5,000 years ago, and been brought to Europe from the Middle East during the Crusades.

The discussion will illuminate the universality of creative expression and adapting to your audience while keeping traditional roots alive. Through the colourful history of the instrument and Max's own influences as an American musician who has trained and performed internationally, the programme will also explore the reinterpretation of folk and classical music and the different cultures of music that exist in the professional space.

Max ZT has been lauded as an innovator of the hammered dulcimer. Taking his roots from classical Irish folk music, he has transplanted his compositional techniques to both Senegal- where he studied the Mandinko technique with the Cissoko griot family — and Mumbai — where he received a grant to study under the great santoor master Pandit Shivkumar Sharma. His fresh perspective and bold experimentalism have been the backbone to beautiful, complex and genuine compositions, while his unorthodox playing style has been a pioneering force in revolutionizing dulcimer techniques. Based out of Brooklyn, New York, he has released six albums, and he won the National Hammered Dulcimer Championship in 2005. Max and his band House of Waters have shared the stage with some of the most influential international and national musical leaders of the century, including Pandit Ravi Shankar, Tinariwen, Jimmy Cliff and KODO.

To submit your questions in advance for Max ZT, please email [email protected]


Asia Society Members — Free entry with one complimentary glass of wine
Non-members — Free entry only

RSVP required: please email [email protected] (priority will be given to Asia Society members)

This event is a part of our AsiaBuzz series, a networking series designed to showcase experts from diverse backgrounds in an evening of drinks, discussions, and exchanges. Previous speakers we have hosted include CEO of Datawind, Suneet Singh Tuli, and Head of Global Investment for Goldman Sachs' South East Asia Operations, Brooks Entwhistle.

In partnership with


Event Details

Mon 29 Oct 2012
6:30pm - 8:00pm

Sakshi Gallery, Synergy Art Foundation Ltd, Tanna House, Ground Floor, 11-A, Nathalal Parekh Marg, Colaba, Mumbai