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About Timbalooloo

Timbalooloo seeks to uplift communities by exposing children and families to the richness of global culture in New York and beyond. We seek to empower a new generation to become fluent in the language of music through a unique approach inspired by the way children learn languages fluently.  Instruments come to life and speak through their music and children create music by making their instrument talk. We center our practice around respect for the child and their self-expression, celebration of diverse traditions and an inspiration to create new music.

Through our highly trained Timbalooloo teaching artists, we offer classes through various partner schools and community organizations. While Timbalooloo is centered in New York, we have been getting increasing international attention and now tour the Timbalooloo live concerts at major venues worldwide (from Kennedy Center to Istanbul Jazz Fest, North Sea Jazz to Shanghai Theater). We have also begun licensing the method and providing teacher training to partners worldwide so they can spread the joy of Timbalooloo to their communities. Yet the core of our work continues to be in New York City, deepening bonds in our community through music and a celebration of culture.

About Timbalooloo Founder Oran Etkin

Widely regarded as one of the top clarinetists and composers of his generation, Etkin was recently voted #1 rising star clarinetist in DownBeat Magazine’s Critic’s Poll, regularly performs at major jazz festivals internationally and has recorded on numerous albums including a GRAMMY Award Winning compilation.

His passion for music started early and by the age of nine he was playing piano, guitar, violin and saxophone. After falling in love with the music of Louis Armstrong, Etkin’s parents took him to visit New Orleans where the legendary Anthony “Tuba Fats” Lacen briefly took the young Etkin under his wing. Etkin’s passion for teaching springs from his gratitude to the teachers and mentors who shared the gift of music with him, including  jazz masters such as Dave Liebman and Yusef Lateef, classical icons like Charles Neidich, Klezmer innovators such as Dave Krakauer and griot musicians from West Africa. As a touring musician, Etkin continues to work with traditional masters from many cultures, each of whom give him a fresh perspective on how to nurture a deep love and intuitive understanding of music in children.  As Etkin tours the world, he gathers melodies, rhythms, stories and songs that he then shares with the Timbalooloo students and audiences, helping to connect children from diverse cultures through music.