About Us

Hijaz is a multi-ethnic group based around the dialogue between the oud/qanun and the piano. Hijaz is an Arabic musical scale but also holds a clear reference to jazz. Where Arabic music is the starting point, jazz is the open attitude towards diverse musical cultures. Hijaz is a close quartet exploring differences and similarities in Mediterranean cultures in order to create harmony, warmth and musical beauty. More than 10 years already, Hijaz is searching for the perfect symbioses between Mediterranean warmth, polyrhythmic structures and musical virtuosity. In a tight formation of four core musicians, Hijaz captures the magic of the moment during their concerts. Recently, in the Spring of 2021, Hijaz aligned with a cello and two violins for 8 new songs by Hijaz and arranged for strings by bass player Ben Faes. Above all, the fellowship of these four friends & musicians gives a way to the heart of audiences all around the globe.

Chryster Aerts (Percussion - Belgium)
Chryster studied drums at the Academy of Music of Antwerp, Jazz and Light Music department, with the teachers Chander Sardjoe, Stephane Galland and Jan de Haas. He enrolled in several teaching practices for drums and percussion in both his own country and foreign countries (Berklee Summerschool in Italy, African percussion in Senegal, etc.). Chryster draws his experience out of several jazz formations like DEEP, DEEP, Four Orbits, Rainbow Rhythms, Virus, Paola Marquez Quartet and his sextet C.A. Band. Nowadays he mostly puts his energy in the booty shakin' bigband Balaxy Orchestra, the pop group Assunta Mano and the Tunesian grooving Hijaz. He teaches drums and percussion classes at the Music Academies of Baarle-Hertog/Hoogstraten and Grimbergen and is the principal of the Junior Academy of Music of Sterrebeek. He also works as a freelance musician in schools and gives courses/workshops djembé (Villa Basta, Piazza dell’Arte, Oorsmeer,…). In May 2003, he received a laude of the Koning Boudewijnstichting for the project Ritmiekdag produced with his collegue-friend-drummer-percussionist Bart Van Aken. He also works as a freelance musician with the Dance Company Enclave of Roberto Olivan (De Farra, Helsinki 2005), Jerboa, the percussiongroup Mzungi and others…
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