The Art of Middle Eastern Rhythm & Maqam Series (Class 1/ for All Levels)

Explore mystical Middle Eastern rhythms & exotic Maqam melodies

Get ready to dust off your drums* and enliven your soul!

Enjoy 2.5 hours of learning and playing mystical Middle Eastern rhythms, centered around exotic Maqam melodies that will re-connect you to the pulse of life.

About this Training:

In this joyful Training for all levels (including total beginners), we will start by learning frame drum TECHNIQUES and Middle Eastern RHYTHMS. Then we will progress to the MAQAM HIJAZ ~ a traditional Arabic scale that you can use to sing along with your frame drum or any hand drum (such as Middle Eastern doumbek and African Djembe).

Our session will end with a fun exploration of IMPROVISATION using drum and voice.

Includes a beautiful PDF of rhythms and notations (with lifetime access, so you can continue learning, mastering and being inspired).

You will leave feeling completely uplifted by the magical properties of ancient Middle Eastern music!




We will explore playing the frame drum in `free-hand style’, a wonderful style that you can also apply to other types of hand drums (see video below for an example).

Beginners will learn the basics; intermediate students will have the chance to refine their strokes.


You will learn and play mystical Middle Eastern rhythms that you can use for your own drum practice and to accompany traditional music… Wonderful additions to your rhythmic toolbox!

🐪🐪🐪 THE MAQAM HIJAZ (for voice and any instrument)

Just as we have scales in Western music, Middle Eastern music has Maqams.
Maqams are incredibly useful to help us with our composition and improvisation skills and they are unique to Arabian classical music.


The Workshop will end with a fun exploration and improvisation of drum and voice, using the rhythms and Hijaz we have just learned.

Don’t worry if you’ve never improvised before - Marla will guide you through simple rhythms and suggested melodies, leaving you inspired to create your own spicy twists!

We will learn to sing the beautiful Maqam Hijaz. It will be taught for the voice, but if you play any instrument, you are encouraged to learn it on your instrument too!



Everyone! Open to ALL levels (beginners warmly welcome).


The workshop will be taught on frame drum, but you can apply it to other types of between-the-knees hand drums, for example, djembe or doumbek.


  • LIFETIME ACCESS to 2.5 Hour Workshop replay.
  • PLUS a super-useful PDF with notations of rhythms & music!

It truly is an investment to create positive vibrations for your new year and for life 😍

See you in class,
Love, Marla


Your Instructor

Marla Leigh
Marla Leigh

Hello, I'm Marla… a Grammy-nominated musician and one of the few female frame drum specialists in the world today.

Having studied music since I was three years old, music is my first love and greatest passion! I hold a BFA & MFA in Percussion and have been fortunate to study with some of the most world-renowned, inspiring teachers and leading masters in frame drum, Indian and West African drumming.

Delighted to pass on what I’ve learned, I’ve now been teaching for over 25 years. I have seen, first-hand, the amazing power of music to help heal and bring joy. Over 15 years ago, I first started helping students online, when that kind of learning was a strange new world.

The Frame Drum Academy online is my dream child. Born in 2015, we currently have hundreds of happy students and are growing by the day!

DEEP Gratitude to my teachers, without whom I would not be where I am today!

My drum training includes:
  • Education:
    Bachelor of Fine Art in Music (BFA) & Master of Fine Art (MFA) in Percussion from California Institute of the Arts
    Ali Akbar College

  • Percussion teachers:
    John Bergamo, Glen Velez, Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri, Poovlar Srinivasaan, Alfred Ladzekpo, Kobla Ladzekpo, Randy Gloss and Layne Redmond.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.

Get started now!