Mal Barsamian’s musical career began when he was four years old playing the dumbeg (hand drum) with his father Leo Barsamian at an Armenian picnic.
Mal comes from a family of oud players starting with his grandfather, great-uncle, his uncle and of course his father. He has gone on to become a sought-after oud player (lute) and clarinetist as well as other instruments such as dumbeg ( hand drum), guitar, bouzouki, and saxophone in Armenian, Greek, and Middle Eastern communities for forty years throughout the country.He performed with the late Esber Korporcu, an important figure in Boston’s Middle-Eastern music community, and has also appeared with Mehmet Sanlikol’s Dunya organization. Mal is a specialist in music written by Armenian composers active in Istanbul during the later years of the Ottoman Empire. Also trained as a classical guitarist, he obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in classical guitar performance studying with Robert Paul Sullivan from the New England Conservatory of Music. Mal is also on the applied faculty staff at Tufts University’s World Music Department, teaching oud, saxophone, clarinet and percussion. Applied faculty member at Boston College and also has the Middle Eastern Ensemble at New England Conservatory of Music.