When most of us set out to connect with the Quran and improve our recitation, we invariably start with learning tajweed - perhaps you’ve already put in the time and heard it all: “slow it down - you’re reading too fast - you have to read letter by letter” ...
or how about “give a little bit more bounce on the qaaf” …
or “make your ikhfaa a little bit lighter” …
Maybe you even went on to study a text in tajweed, or recited to a teacher to fix your mistakes - perhaps you’ve gotten to the point where you’re satisfied with your level in tajweed.
The tajweed helped - it definitely did. You’re reciting more clearly, more confidently, and alhamdulillah correctly. But when you listen to your favourite reciter, their voice, their tune, the way they’re reading - it’s just. so. mashaAllah - you can feel it. The Quran comes alive, and you feel the words, meanings, and stories - it’s real - and your heart reacts to that …
Their recitation draws you into the scene and touches your heart in a way that's hard to put in words ... you’re no longer just hearing with your ears; you can feel the ayat being recited - and for just a moment the thought crosses your mind:
And it’s not just you - from the emails I get from readers like yourself, I know that this is something that many are struggling with - and it’s not really being addressed.
Take a look - these are real quotes from emails I regularly receive:
Pay attention - you’ll notice a few things in her email:
One: She recites with correct tajweed …
Two: yet she still struggles to recite with a melody …
and Three: she feels her recitation is boring and she wants to recite with more emotion
From the emails I get from readers like yourself, I know that this is something that you’re struggling with. You know that you want to improve your tune, but you’re not really sure where to start. You know that when you listen to your favourite reciter, you can feel their tune - it pulls you in and sounds oh-so-beautiful. But when you try to recite with a tune, it’s just not coming out the way you want it to.
Maybe you asked someone about this, and they told you “don’t worry just focus on tajweed”. But you already did that (alhamdulillah!) but you’re still not happy with your tune.
Maybe you discovered there’s this thing called maqamat - the tunes used by our favourite reciters - and you’re like *OMG this is what I was looking for*. So you start listening to clips on YouTube, trying to figure this out on your own.
So you go from one clip to the next, listening attentively, trying to copy the tune, but hours later you find yourself stuck in the same place. Sometimes you can kind of hear the pattern, but from one reciter to the next, it sort of, kind of sounds the same, yet at the same time it sounds so different ... sometimes it seems like it's there right in front of you, but then it slips away right as you try to hold on to it ...
“How exactly does this whole maqamat thing work, and why is it so hard for me to learn a maqam? Will I ever be able to recite with a tune, or maybe this is just the way my voice is?”
I get it - it can seem daunting at first - you’re trying to listen to different clips and you’re trying to get the tune, but it’s just not coming to you. And you can’t for the life of you figure out what you’re supposed to be doing differently. And that’s where the doubt begins to set in … maybe I’m just tone-deaf ... maybe I’m not cut out for this ... and you give up even before you fully got started.
But what if I told you that you could recite with a tune, and experience even some of the joy of reciting beautifully? What if you could recite with emotion, and actually enjoy the sound of your own recitation? What if you could enjoy hearing yourself while reciting aloud in Isha, or maybe when you sit down with your mushaf after a long day at work?
Alhamdulillah for the past eight years, I’ve been teaching the art of recitation and maqamat - helping others like you to recite Quran beautifully. Today I want to tell you about my newest course, and how it can help you learn to recite beautifully:
In the course we'll actually draw out the pattern, so you can follow along visually. No more guessing how to go up and down - we’ll show you exactly how and where to go up and down so that you can implement the pattern in your recitation. This is a huge 'aha' moment for a lot of my students - going from "I have no idea what's going on" to "Ah so that's how it works!".
Once you learn this there’s no going back - you’ll finally understand how maqamat work. No more listening, listening, and listening more - but still you're not quite sure why or how a certain maqam sounds the way it does. You'll start to build your ear to be able to hear differences in pitch so that you can understand how maqamat are put together. This is a skill that will help you later on when and if you decide to go further with learning more maqamat.
Good question - I’m guessing you’re new here. Think of your favourite reciter - they’re not just reciting with excellent tajweed - they’re also captivating you with a beautiful tune, aka a maqam. So maqam=tune. Some reciters (like Sh. Sudais for example) always recite with the same tune, whereas many other reciters change up their tune from day to day, or even within a single recitation. The different tune patterns have different names - for example hijaz, sika, rast, and so on. Most likely, even if you’re not familiar with the names, the sound of at least some of these tunes might be fairly recognizable to you. Maqam ajam for example is a common tune - it's beautiful, uplifting and soothing. If you listen to Quran, most likely you’ve heard this tune even if you didn’t know the name.
Remember earlier, when we spoke about the doubts that creep in? Many people - perhaps even yourself - might have tried to figure out maqamat on YouTube, but it didn’t work out. So you might think to yourself “maybe I’m just tone-deaf” or “maybe I just have a bad voice”. But here’s the thing - from my experience as a teacher, in most cases that’s simply not the case.
Here's the thing: for every maqam there's a key, or a specific pattern that creates a specific sound. Go up and down a certain way, and you'll get a certain tune - say for example maqam hijaz. Go up and down a different way, and you end up with a different tune - say maqam nahawand, and so on. Once you know that pattern, it becomes way easier to follow and hear the pattern in your head, and then to implement in your recitation.
The difficulty with trying to figure it out from YouTube recitations is that these patterns leave a lot of room for creativity - so when you’re online going from one clip to another, it's often unclear to the beginner what exactly the pattern is - each reciter might have their own way of expressing the pattern, and on top of that they're going above and beyond, playing with their voices, extending their breath, and so on ... leaving you confused about what exactly is the pattern for the maqam.
In this course we’ll solve that - no more confusion. We’ll start by helping you understand how maqamat work - like how exactly do different tunes get their sound? What makes one maqam sound different from another?
Then from there, we’ll break down the pattern and structure for maqam nahawand and ajam. Not just my reading a pattern and expecting you to follow - rather we’ll break it down for you, using simple, easy to follow diagrams and short patterns. So you get to use multiple senses - in this case seeing the pattern with your eyes helps you to hear it better in your head.
From there, we move from short patterns to implementing them in short ayat. Step-by-step, with a well thought out progression - not just someone reciting and expecting that you just copy them.
From there, we move to longer ayat, more patterns, and a lot of practice to help you implement the pattern in your own recitation, so that you can recite smoothly and fluently with a beautiful tune.
It’s a method that’s well thought out and designed to help you progress, and student results show that this works.
"I really enjoyed Idrees Ally's hijaz mini-course. It was very well structured and went from basically zero to actually doing some more advanced recitation in a very short time. It is clear that the progression is well-thought out - much more so than in other online maqamat courses that I have experienced. What I enjoyed the most is that you present the subject in an organized, step by step manner, which gave me a sense of direction. I enjoyed the way you explained the hijaz pattern visually (with the lines at different heights) which made it very easy and approachable for people with little-to-no experience. I sincerely recommend this course if you want a clear, guided introduction to Hijaz, and maqamat in general."
This program is carefully designed to help you make progress - and consists of a mix of live classes (the main sessions where I teach), optional coaching calls (where you can get feedback and help), guided practice audio clips (to help you with your practice), and a student community (for further help, Q&A, and motivation). Here are the details:
The course begins Saturday May 20, 2023 and ends Saturday July 8. The main component of this program are live lessons - these are the main lessons which will take place via Zoom at 9am Eastern time (2pm in the UK). Recordings will be available shortly thereafter for those unable to attend live.
In order to help you further, we’ll host extra optional tutorial sessions where students can have their questions answered, and get feedback on their implementation of the material. These are optional, and timings will vary in order to accommodate students in different time zones, especially those who cannot join the main lessons.
These are audio exercises specifically designed to help you learn the maqam - bit by bit, step by step. Compared to maqamat demos you’ll find on YouTube (where it’s really just a recitation they expect you to copy), these audio clips will hold your hand and help you practice the concepts and patterns we learned in the main lessons.
This is an opportunity to get extra help and support in this journey - It always helps to connect with other and be part of a motivating environment rather than just going at it on your own. You can connect here with your instructor and like-minded students, get help, support one another, and share resources.
"Alhamdulillah the maqam hijaz course was absolutely amazing - I managed to feel after this course of course much more confident in reciting the quran, less self-conscious regarding my tune and subhanallah the maqam hijaz flows every time without me even having to think about it."
"The hijaz course was fantastic and it was a great way to start in the maqamat field. To be honest it exceed my expectations because the sheikh was following us in every step with extra practices. I felt a bit stuck in the first lessons where it was very difficult for me to understand the pattern, but through practice every thing got better. Even though I need to keep practicing, my recitation is now better than it was before!"
This is not a full course outline - rather an overview of some of the topics we’ll cover in this program to give you an idea of what to expect. Some topics and concepts will be covered in extensive detail - such as Maqam Hijaz, and more broadly understanding how maqamat work. We won't just “talk” about this, rather we’ll spend most of the course practicing maqam nahawand and seeing in practice how maqamat work.
Some other things - for example the moods of the maqamat - are topics that we’ll introduce and explain the concepts rather than spending several lessons practicing this.
With that in mind, here are some of the things we’ll cover:
Assalaamu alaikum! I still remember the days when I first discovered maqamat, and I'd be poring over different clips online, struggling to figure out the patterns. At that time, I would have died (not literally lol) for a course like this one. Fast forward to today, and alhamdulillah I've been successfully teaching maqamat and the art of recitation to students like yourself for over eight years. I would never describe myself as a master, but alhamdulillah I have excellent command of the main maqamat, and it's easy for me to recite in any maqam and transition between them as well. I also like to believe that I have a balanced approach to maqamat and the art of recitation, and I always try to convey to my students the importance of reciting beautifully whilst not going unnecessarily overboard.
Alhamdulillah I've had the honour of studying tajweed and qira'at with a number of teachers. Most notably I have ijazah in riyawat Hafs from the late Mufti Umer Ismail (rahimahullah), as well as ijazah in the ten qira'at (asharah sughra & kubra) from Shyakh Uthman Khan (hafidhahullah).
QARI IDREES ALLY
Click below to join The Overnight Qari Experience, and experience the joy of reciting beautifully. You’ll get full access to the main live lessons, optional coaching calls, practice audio clips, all bonus sessions, plus the student community.
You can choose to pay in two payments of $147 USD, or you can save $47 by paying in full ($247 USD).
If you’ve been looking to learn maqamat and beautify your tune, you know as well as I do that it would be very difficult to find a course similar to this one. I’ve poured my heart and soul into figuring out how best to teach maqamat to beginners, and I stand behind this course 100% - I know that if you put in the practice, you will eventually get results. The student feedback highlighted on this page is testament to that.
Here’s my offer: Commit to the course and go through the lessons and practice exercises. If you do the work and you’re not satisfied, let us know within 30 days of registering, and we’ll be happy to cancel your registration and give you a FULL refund.
"For student like me, this course perfectly catered to my busy schedule, and absolutely met my expectations. Since it was only a short course, the course materials that was taught wasn't overwhelming, but was ample and well spaced out. I was new to this subject and had no background in maqamat - this was perfect to get a feel of how things go in learning maqamat. One thing I found interesting was how each maqam has a specific tune, and Maqam Hijaz has its own specific tune, so now I was able to recognize certain Qaris who used this maqamat."
(Saba Shaikh, USA)
"I've tried listening to different maqamat and have only been able to get a feel of the emotions that are associated with it, but could never distinguish between them at all. I liked the way you broke down the pattern of the maqam in a simple way that I could practice. I liked the idea of focusing on one and feeling comfortable with it before moving on. I feel like I now understand maqam hijaz on a very basic level which is a huge success in my opinion. Every class, more and more things started to make sense to me and I kind of just added on what I knew every week. Overall, I loved it and I don't know of any other classes like it so I'm extremely grateful."
(Janna Soliman, USA)
"Thank you for providing this course - it was very useful, informative and definitely exceeded expectations. I do believe the most significant thing is the course structure, especially with regards to timing. With this course there is a set webinar, at a specific time, for 4 weeks (very reasonable), with some practice lessons to do during the week, so from my perspective (and I am sure many others) this was very effective. Of course, the content was great and everything you mentioned during the webinars was an "aha" moment, especially as the course goes on and when you connect the dots. Finally, I would just like to say I am very happy that I stumbled across your site and joined both courses (and hopefully more to come!). May Allah reward and bless you and your family."
"Maqamat has always been a mystery to me, but through this course I got an insight into the maqamat. A lot of things have been made clear - I learned basics and it’s helpful in building up on it. I have already started looking into other maqamat and understood those. Alhamdulillah by the third class and with some practice it was very rewarding and those were "yes i know now", "i got it" moments. Please keep doing the good work, so far you are the only teacher I came across who is doing this work in english language. so, JazakAllah khairan katheeran for making this knowledge available to us. and inshaAllah maybe one day my kids will be your students too!"
(Hanan Mohammed, USA)
"I was also very pleasantly surprised by how much I was able to learn nevertheless based on your course’s structure. I am now able to incorporate maqam nahawand (and vary it) in my own recitation. I improved in being able to control the tone of my voice when reciting; it no longer jumps around wildly or seemingly without a pattern like it used to."
(M. Ali, USA)
When is this program taking place?
The program begins Saturday May 20 and runs until Sat July 8, 2023. The main lessons are Saturdays from 9 - 10:30am Eastern time. It is best to budget a full 1.5 hours, although most of the time we'll finish up in approx 1 hr, with extra time for Q&A. During the weekdays we will have optional coaching/tutorial sessions.
What if I can’t attend live on Saturdays?
The lessons will be recorded so that you can listen at your convenience. Many students do not attend live because of other commitments, time zone differences, etc - the course is designed with this flexibility in mind.
Can I recite to you to get feedback on my recitation?
Yes, during the optional group coaching calls, students can ask questions and also take the mic to get specific help and feedback on their implementation of the material.
What can I reasonably expect from taking this program? Will I master maqamat by the end of this program?
Mastery (of anything) takes time, so it would be unreasonable to expect that. Generally speaking, most students that follow the program and put in the practice will, by the end of this program, be able to take the patterns they learned and implement it anywhere they recite. Others will make significant progress towards this, but may need more time and practice to fine tune their implementation. This is normal and to be expected.
What if I’m tone-deaf?
Most people who think they’re tone-deaf are not truly tone-deaf - they just haven’t done much practice in this regard, or they haven’t learned a structure/pattern to base their recitation on. I’ve worked with students who thought they were tone-deaf, only to have them reciting in a tune within a few weeks. A minority of students may have difficulty in this regard, and may need to spend a bit more time on ear training.
Can sisters join this program?
Yes, absolutely! I encourage sisters to join - beautifying one's recitation is not just for brothers. Some of our optional coaching calls, or portions thereof, will be for sisters only, for those who prefer that.
What if my tajweed isn’t great? Can I still benefit from this program?
Tajweed is absolutely the foundation of a beautiful recitation. Having said that, there’s no harm in exploring your tune even if you’re still working on improving your tajweed. For those students who need to brush up on their tajweed, there will be an option to join my Beautiful Tajweed course at a significantly reduced rate, after you complete registration for the Overnight Qari Experience.
I want to learn another maqam!
So not quite a question, but often when I teach a course like this, I’ll always get some students saying they want to learn sika, or saba, or some other maqam. What students often don’t realize is that the maqamat are all related. Yes they’re different but they work in similar ways. In a program like this, you’ll understand how maqamat are put together - and by practicing one maqam, you inevitably make it easier for you to learn others afterwards as well.
I’m genuinely unable to afford this. Do you have a scholarship program or alternate payment options?
Yes we do. If you would like to join this program, but you are genuinely facing financial hardship, or if you live in a part of the world where USD pricing is wildly inaccessible, kindly email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Kindly do so asap and do not wait for the registration deadline so that we can process your request on time.
If you've read this far, I'm guessing that you know deep down inside that you want to improve your tune so that you can recite smoothly and beautifully, and take your relationship with the Quran to new heights ...
Maybe you've tried to fix this on your own, going from one YouTube demo to another trying to figure this out ...
Perhaps it's been years that you've silently wished you could improve your tune, and you've started to bury that dream inside of you ...
I invite you to join what I really feel is a fresh and unique approach to learning maqamat. Our overwhelmingly positive student feedback exists because this works. Yes it takes effort - you have put in the practice if you want to improve. But the method works and I know that if you've ever wanted to learn maqamat, this course will definitely help you in ways you can't imagine.
Where might you be in a few months, if you could make significant improvements in your recitation? How might next Ramadan be different for you? I invite you to register below - try something different, and see where this road leads you.
Remember - you are fully backed by our 30-day guarantee. Give it your best shot, and if you're not happy with the program, or if it's not working for you, you can opt out within 30 days for a full refund.
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