Hamza El Din created a unique fusion of Arabic music with the indigenous music of his native Nubia. In his masterful hands the oud (the precursor of the lute in the West, pipa in China and biwa in Japan) becomes a virtuoso instrument as well as an accompaniment to his gentle and hypnotic singing. He has single-handedly created a new music, essentially a Nubian/Arabic fusion, but one in line with both traditions and informed by Western conservatory training. First discovered by Western audiences through his performance at the Newport Folk Festival and Vanguard recordings in 1964/65, his 1970 Nonesuch recording, Escalay: The Water Wheel is legendary among musicians and connoisseurs. His best-known recording in the U.S. is "Eclipse," produced and engineered by Grateful Dead percussionist Mickey Hart. Hamza's music has also appeared in movie soundtracks from Egypt, Germany, Japan, and the US, including Francis Ford Coppola's The Black Stallion. Hamza has appeared regularly with the Kronos Quartet, which included Escalay: The Water Wheel on their chart-topping "Pieces of Africa" album. His compositions were performed by Béjart Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, and Molissa Fenley Dance Company. Hamza El Din created the score for Alonzo King LINES Ballet’s Tarab (1998), and performed live with the Company in San Francisco.