Ihab Darwish is the only Emirati composer who draws inspirations from film music and classical music in the broad sense. Supported by his family, especially his mother, at the age of 10 he began learning to play the piano and gradually discovered the world of music. Thanks to his independence Darwish could freely develop and improve his compositional skills as well as individual musical language.
Darwish’s recording studio, his own design and creation, equipped with the highest quality devices and music instruments, enabled him to experiment, explore and create spectacular sounds.
In 2017, at the invitation of the Nahda Foundation, the Beethoven Academy Orchestra had the pleasure of recording the debut album Waves of my life with Darwish’s original compositions in Alvernia Studios near Cracow. The album was published at the beginning of 2018 by Universal Music. On 14th March, with the participation of OAB and the Polish Radio Choir, the works of the Emirati composer had their world premiere during the International Festival in Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi Festival). In the same year, Ihab Darwish received the title of the first OAB’s composer.
In his compositions Darwish refers to Western film music through the monumental sound of the orchestra, not forgetting of course the native Arabic music idiom such as: instrumentation (oud, ney, qanoon), a characteristic type of singing and musical scales. This musical eclecticism balances on the border of two musical cultures: the eastern and western, as well as tradition and modernity, powerful patriotic and private, even intimate, motifs. Thus, it reflects all the stylistic, cultural and emotional influences that have shaped the author’s musical personality. In his compositions, the artist refers to people, values, traditions and historical events, such as the figure of Sheikh Zayed Al.-Nahyan, the founder of the United Arab Emirates, or the modernization project run by Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and the commander-in-chief of the Emirate armed forces. Other topics include universal values such as the role of women in society, love, humanity and tolerance. The album Waves of my life brings a very special and unique, the only vocal composition, Lawlaki, recorded by the outstanding and extraordinary Lebanese vocalist, Sammy Clark, and the poet Ghazi Murada, who is the author of the words.