Zahra is is the first violinist and founding member of the prize-winning Benyounes Quartet with whom she has performed and recorded for 16 years. With the quartet she has performed internationally at leading venues and festivals including Wigmore Hall, Vienna Konzerthaus, Verbier, Aldeburgh and given multiple radio broadcasts. The quartet's diverse discography including their most recent album 'Innovators' for Champs Hill Records have received widespread critical acclaim.
Further experience as a chamber musician has led to collaborations with internationally renowned artists such as Nicky Spence, Tim Ridout, David Cohen, Awadagin Pratt and Julian Bliss, and as soloist she has performed with the BBC Singers live on Radio 3. With the Benyounes, Zahra has premiered numerous works for string quartet by pioneering contemporary composers such as Paul Ruders, Philip Cashian, Simon Bainbridge and John Woolrich.
Zahra lead the Chineke! Orchestra's 2021 BBC Prom and the re-opening of the Royal Festival Hall post lockdown with Sheku Kanneh-Mason as soloist. She has appeared as guest principal with leading UK ensembles including Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, BBCNOW, Riot Ensemble, Aurora and 12 Ensemble. Zahra regularly performs and records with the innovative London Contemporary Orchestra and has featured on film sound tracks Matrix Resurrections, Phantom Thread - Thom York, Alien Covenant - Jed Kurzel and on albums by Taylor Swift, Frank Ocean and Radiohead.
Her tutors have included Gabor Takacs-Nagy, Maciej Rakowski and Quatuor Ebene and she has participated in masterclasses with artists including Pamela Frank, Eberhard Feltz, Peter Copper and Andras Keller.
As a teacher herself, Zahra is on the faculty of chamber music at the Royal Northern College of Music and she has given masterclasses at conservatoires and universities across the UK and Ireland. Zahra is the Artistic Director of the South Downs Summer Music Festival.
'..masterful and totally engaging..'
Equally at home in the recording studio, Zahra spends much of her career working for film, TV and record producers at major London studios such as Abbey Road, AIR and RAK. She has recorded for a multitude of commerical artists primarily as part of Wired Strings. She has performed live at the Royal Albert Hall with Michael Kiwanuka, Stereophonics, Goldfrapp, Boy George and Bjork and live on 'Later with Jools Holland', The Brits and for London Fashion Week.
Zahra's surname is of Arabic origin. She plays on a beautiful 1682 Nicolo Amati kindly made available to her from the Boucher Trust.