Kira Weiss is an M.A./Ph.D. student in ethnomusicology at UC Santa Barbara. Her doctoral research focuses on the history of the cello in Eastern Arab art music (al-Musiqa al-‘Arabiyya) in MENA and the U.S. Dealing with issues of globalization, modernization and pedagogy, Kira’s research traces the historical development of the cello in Eastern Arab ensembles (firaq).
Kira earned her B.A. in Music and International Studies from Humboldt State University. Working as a semi-professional cellist, she performed with four symphonies across northern California. She served as principal cellist of Eureka Symphony and as a soloist with North State Symphony. Kira currently studies cello with Dr. Jennifer Kloetzel and taqasim (improvisation) with her advisor, Dr. Scott Marcus. Kira plays with the UCSB Middle East Ensemble (cello, ‘ud) and Sephardic band Flor de Kanela (cello, gudulka).