Kurfirst, Dan

image via New Music USA

Primary Scene: Brooklyn/New York

Dan Kurfirst is an NYC based percussionist, composer and improviser. Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, his music is a product of his good fortune to have been brought up amongst people of all different cultures and master practitioners of varying musical styles.

He has performed extensively in the New York City world music and improvised music scenes for years and has performed with various groups throughout Europe, India and the Middle East. Venues performed at include The John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The Stone, OkeeChobee Festival, Roulette, Alwan for the Arts, Nublu, Rabindra Sadan Cultural Center of Kolkata, Barbes and The Vision Festival.

He has lectured at Columbia University, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Rabindra Sadan Nandan Campus(India) and the New York City Public School System.

Over the years Dan has been blessed to work amongst some of the world’s most creative musicians, including Matt Darriau, Cheick Hamala Diabate, Tom Chess, Hamid Drake, Adam Rudolph, Oruc Guvenc, Noam Vazana, Neda Zaharaie, Daniel Carter, Brad Shepik, Gabriel Marin, William Parker, Daro Behroozi, Brandon Terzic, Kane Mathis and Ras Moshe – to name just a few.

As a drummer/composer, Dan leads Spheric Sound Unita group dedicated to exploring cultural syncretism through music. He also co-leads Ensemble Fanaa, a trio which explores the intersection between African American, North African and Middle Eastern musical traditions.

He recently worked as Musical Director for the Childrens Museum of Manhattan’s America To Zanzibar exhibit, helping to develop a touchscreen application for the Children to explore music of the Islamic world from India to Egypt to Indonesia.



Jeanne LandersKurfirst, Dan