ROYA World Music
"Innovative Fusion, Seductive Sounds"- The Smithsonian
From Left: Jon Seligman, Anna Menendez, Ricardo Marlow, Roya Bahrami, Emmanuel Trifilio, Denis Malloy (2014-2017 members)



Roya Bahrami: Music Director, Composer, Arranger, Lyricist, Santur, Vocals

Roya has received the Individual Artist Fellowship award from DC Commission on Arts and Humanities (DC Arts) in the ‘composer’ category, 5 years in a row, most recently for fiscal year 2021. She is also a proud recipient of DC Arts grants (2009-2014, 2020) for her contributions as a producer of educational and artistic presentations to a multitude of audiences from pre-K to university students, to musicians and general public.  Her educational programs are focused on “Understanding Multicultural Identity through Artistic Expression.  She also offers educational programs on topics: “Traces of Persian Music in Andalusia”, “Music and Spirituality”, and “Persian Art Music – From Traditional to Contemporary Forms.”

Roya’s solo performance credits (2007-present) include the Library of Congress, The National Gallery of Art, The Rumi Forum, Smithsonian Freer Gallery, George Washington University, American University, University of Maryland, Museum of Flamenco Dance in Seville, Spain, Austria School of Music, Congress of the Cimbalom World Association in Mexico, Hungary, and Slovakia.

Roya has been interviewed and her music has been featured on Voice Of America and BBC in several broadcasts to millions of Persian speaking viewers and listeners in Iran and all over the world.  She accompanied the flamenco dancer Carmela Greco on her U. S. tour (2004-2005) and has performed on Spain’s national TV in 1999 as well as at the Museum of Flamenco Dance in Seville in 2008.

Roya is a native of Iran who immigrated to the U.S. as a teenager and has spent most of her life in Washington DC, a city with diverse musical culture, including jazz and Latin traditions that have contributed to the colorful palette in Roya’s musical creations. She has studied Music Production, Music Publication, Arrangement, and Orchestration at Berklee College of Music.  Roya studied Persian classical music with masters such as M.R. Lotfi, Hossein Alizadeh, and Dariush Talai and plays the Persian hammer dulcimer Santur.  She has also studied Western classical music on the piano and the Spanish flamenco through dance and theory. All these musical studies and experiences have resulted in a natural blend of these traditions in her compositions - a poetic blend of Persian, Spanish flamenco, jazz and tango traditions.

She co-produced, arranged and recorded the Santur parts in the album Probe in 1999, a multicultural collaboration. She produced the albums Roya in 2007 and I Am I Am Not in 2010, with all her original compositions, lyrics, and arrangements.

Roya Multicultural Ensemble’s (formed in 2007) performance credits include: Smithsonian's celebratory concert for President Obama's Inauguration, Washington Folk Festival, The Mansion at Strathmore, Amnesty International Arts Festival, Gettysburg World Heritage Festival, Shepherd University, Mary Washington University, University of Maryland, Green Acres School, Bell Multicultural High School, University of Memphis, Summer Live! Concerts at Woodrow Wilson Plaza, Reston Multicultural Festival, American University, Towson University, and a City Arts Project at GALA Theatre.


Denis Malloy: Bass Clarinet

Denis Malloy is a versatile musician and composer happily making diverse music in the Washington D.C. and Baltimore metropolitan area. 

Denis has performed with the Summer Opera Company in Washington, D.C., the AIMS Symphonie Orchester in Graz Austria, and the Concerto Soloists of Philadelphia and is currently a member of The Georgetown Quintet.  He has performed with his own jazz duo, trio and quartet at venues including the Library of Congress, the Baltimore Museum of Art and the Peabody Library.  

He has composed music for several Silent Era films.  He has performed live accompaniment to silent film at the Kennedy Center, American Film Institute, Baltimore Museum of Art, Walters Art Museum, and the Virginia Film Festival, among others.   Denis appears on more than a dozen CDs, including recordings by Boister produced by respected producer Jim Dickinson, Persian Flamenco group The Roya Ensemble, and his independent project TreeHouse Quartet.   He is a graduate of the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. 

Denis teaches clarinet with the Washington D.C. Youth Orchestra Program and clarinet and saxophone at International School of Music  and his private studio in the D.C. area.  Denis’ jazz duo with guitarist / vocalist Stanley “Z” Ng  appears twice monthly at Terasol Bistro in Washington DC.

Richard 'Ricardo' Marlow: Flamenco & Rhythm Guitar

Winner of the 2017, 2013, 2010, and 2008 Maryland Individual Artist Award, Ricardo Marlow released his debut solo flamenco guitar album ‘Madera Sonora’ in 2008.  In 2011 he released his next album ‘Live in Fresno’, recorded live with Jesus Montoya. The most sought-after flamenco guitarist in the greater Washington-Baltimore metro area, he has appeared at The Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage, The Baltimore Museum of Art, and the Kennedy Center Concert Hall for the 20th Mayor’s Art’s Awards. Since 2003 Ricardo has continued to fulfill an essential role in Edwin Aparicio’s productions, where he shared stages with La Tati, Jose Jimenez ‘El Bocadillo’, Antonio Jimenez ‘El Porras’, and Basillio Garcia Clavero, Jesús Montoya, Alfonso Cid, Roberto Castellón, Pedro Cortes Jr., La Truco, Nelida Tirado, Carmela Greco, Sergio Aranda, Norberto Chamizo, Carlos Menchaca Juan Orozco ‘El Yiyi’ and Amparo Heredia.  He accompanied Esperanza Fernandez at the National Gallery of Art in 2011.

As a young child, Ricardo was introduced to the guitar by his father, the eminent classical guitarist John E. Marlow. He went on to receive a degree from the James Madison University School of Music in 1997. Ricardo subsequently followed his passion to specialize in the flamenco guitar. He has mastered his art under the tutelage of the master flamenco guitarist Gerardo Nuñez in Sanlucar de Barrameda, Spain since 1999.

Throughout his career as a Flamenco guitarist, Ricardo has often found himself either on stage or in the recording studio making interesting fusions with many important musicians of other genres, including Charlie Byrd, Frank Vignola, Canut and Andre Reyes of the Gipsy Kings, Giovanni Hidalgo, Turkish pop star Ege, Jimmy Wilson, Gary and Greg Grainger, Meritxell Negre, Roya Bahrami, Kivanç Oner, and Duende Camaron.

Anna Menendez: Flamenco Fusion Dancer, Choreographer

Anna Menendez, originally from Baltimore, Maryland is a Flamenco Dancer based in  Washington, D.C.  She has danced on many local and national stages.  Anna has appeared in Edwin Aparicio’s productions of  “Bailes Ineditos”,

“Encuentros”, “Camino al Flamenco”,“Entresuenos” and “Intimo” with Carmela Greco.  Anna has performed in over 50 children’s concerts with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO). In 2003, ’04 and ’05 the BSO contracted her to perform in their prime time “Symphony with a Twist” series.

In 2003 and 2004 she performed with renowned classical guitarist Manuel Barrueco and in ’05 choreographed Falla’s “El Amor Brujo” which she presented with a company of dancers with the BSO for sold out performances at the Strathmore and the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.  In October of 2011 Anna and her company “Pastora” performed as a part of Velocity at the Sydney Harman Hall in Washington DC. 

A review by the Washington Post described her performance as “virtuosic”.  Anna is a 2003 recipient of the Artistic Fellowship award from the D.C. council for the Arts and Humanities for excellence in Flamenco dance. Anna currently teaches at the Seber Method Academy in Washington, DC.

Jonathan Seligman: World Percussion: Cajon, Bodhran, Riqq, Color

Percussionist/composer Jon Seligman teaches percussion and world music at McDaniel College, where he received the Shelton Award for Adjunct Faculty Excellence for 2019, and Towson University in Maryland.

His performing and recording credits include Barrio Andalusi, Carey Creed, the Christopher James Band, Gringo Jingo [Santana tribute band], Drew Gress, Furia Flamenca, Hafez Modirzadeh, Len Seligman, Paul Austerlitz, Roya Multicultural Ensemble, Todd Marcus and 3 Trees.

Jon has received three Maryland State Arts Council Grants: in World Music Performance in 2014 and 2011 and Jazz Composition in 2003.  His original music CD, Quintet Music (2010), features Dave Ballou, Bruce Swaim, Harry Appelman and Jeff Reed.   3 Trees first CD, titled 3 Trees, received a Washington Area Music Association Wammie nomination as best world music recording of 2012. In 2018 Jon composed and performed the percussion score to the Baltimore Center Stage Mobile Unit production of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.

Previous collaborators:

Harry Appelman: Keyboards, Piano


Jazz pianist and educator Harry Appelman has performed on concert stages on five continents. He has been chosen three times to participate in U.S. State Department music tours overseas -- to South and Central America, Eastern Europe, Turkey and Cyprus, and South Asia. Appelman leads the latin jazz group Duende Quartet, and has played frequently with Palmetto recording artists Rumba Club. He has performed in concert with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Darren Atwater, and the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra with guest soloist Branford Marsalis. He has also resided and performed in Boston and New York City -- where he played with numerous creative and respected groups, ranging from trumpeter Scott Wendholt's quartet to vocalist Dakota Staton's trio. He has a Master of Music degree with Distinction from the New England Conservatory.


Steve Bloom: World Percussion: daf, tombak, congas, cajon, ashiko, bata, shakers


The Washington Post wrote that… "Steve Bloom has never met a rhythm he couldn’t master.” Bloom has gained a command of Cuban, Senegalese, and Nigerian drumming and song in three decades of apprenticing and performing with masters of these traditions, and Sufi practice and drumming with masters Adnan Sarhan of Baghdad, and Dr. Ali Analouei, from Esfahan, Iran. He has toured and performed extensively in the Irish and Early Music genres. Bloom has performed and/or recorded with many wonderful artists, including Tito Puente, King Sunny Ade', Dennis Cahill, Gregg Karukas,Jon Faddis, Paul Horn, Nestor Torres, Andy Gonzales, Michael Manring,and drumming patriarch Babatunde Olatunji. Based in the Washington, DC area, he has designed workshops and clinics for all levels to accelerate participants’ mastery of musical skills. In 1980, he co-founded the Dance Place, a theater and premier studio for Music and Dance in DC.

Emmanuel Trifilio: Bandoneón

International bandoneonist and prolific tango composer, Argentinian Emmanuel Trifilio brings a fresh perspective to the traditional tango sound, both in performance and composition. After touring across South America and Europe, Sr. Trifilio is now based in Washington, D.C. He has performed as soloist on the main stages of Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, and Lincoln Center, as well as across the U.S. and British Columbia. Sr. Trifilio regularly works with Otros Aires and Quintango, and has appeared with National Philharmonic Orchestra, Choral Arts Society of Washington, and Octavio Brunetti Tango Orchestra. In 2017, Sr. Trifilio will perform in Cuba for the first time; he will also perform Piazzolla’s Concerto for Bandoneon with South Carolina Philharmonic. Sr. Trifilio’s primary project, Trifilio Tango Trio, presents virtuosic performances of Sr. Trifilio’s new and original tango compositions. Their recent appearances include sold out shows at D.C.’s Embassy of Argentina, Embassy of Uruguay, and venues in Buenos Aires. “Milonga de la Ausencia,” from their first album, Original (2016), was nominated for Best Original Score at MOFF Film Festival in Milan 2016. Trifilio Tango Trio’s album, Estaciones, was released in January 2017.

From Left: Ricardo Marlow, Roya Bahrami, Steve Bloom, Denis Malloy (2009-2012 members)
From left: Jon Seligman, Roya Bahrami, Harry Appelman, Ricardo Marlow (2007-2008 members)