Re’ee Hagai is a composer, arranger and student of Anthropology at Tel Aviv University. A 2nd generation Israeli with roots in Morocco, Lebanon and Iraq, he now resides in Jaffa. His musical and academic interests relate to the links between Mizrahi Jews and the Arab world. Hagai has studied a variety of musical traditions, from traditional harmony and counterpoint to Moroccan music. Among his teachers are Omer Avital, Armond Sabah, Erez Rapoport, and Ayala Rosenbaum. His musical influences include Mizrahi and African Pop, French Impressionism and improvisation from Chicago and New York.
Among Hagai’s selected works are Hakol (The Voice), a trio for flute, clarinet and double bass influenced by the Iraqi poet Mai Muzafar, and East Harlem or Cooper Moore Afterthoughts, composed following a moving meeting of Hagai and the New York improviser Cooper Moore. The later has been performed by pianist Shira Yasur who has been one of Hagai’s closest collaborators during the past few years. Other significant works include two arrangements commissioned by the New Jerusalem Orchestra: Peretz Eliyahu’s piece “LeAdonay Haaretz,” and a sequence of Arabic songs arranged in collaboration with Rabi David Menahem and sung by Lubna Salameh, as part of the performance of Maqam Yerushalem.