Kelly Thoma     
Lyra with Sympathetic Strings - Contemporary Modal Music 

Kelly Thoma was born in Piraeus in 1978. Since 1995, she has been studying the lyra with Ross Daly and three years later  started travelling with him and his group, “Labyrinth”, participating in concerts in Europe, Asia, Australia and the U.S. She has taken part in many projects with musicians from various different traditions from other countries.

Being a member of "Labyrinth" and Labyrinth Musical Workshop she has  had the chance to meet and play with many important musicians such as the Trio Chemirani, Omer Erdogdular, Derya Turkan, Zohar Fresco, Pedram Khavar Zamini, Dhruba Ghosh, Ballake Sissoko, Erdal Erzincan, Mehmet Erenler,Yurdal Tokcan, Ustad Mohammed Rahim Khushnawaz and many more. She participates in many of Ross Daly's projects : Ross Daly Quartet, Seyir, Iris, White Dragon (...) as well as in Tokso Folk String Quartet, (with Anne Hytta, Eleonore Billy and Sigrun Eng) and has performed in Carnegie Hall, Theatre de la Ville, Queen Elizabeth Hall, San Francisco WMF, Rainforest WMF, Womadelaide, Rudolstadt and many important venues and festivals around the world.

She has  graduated from the English Literature department of the Athens University as well as from the ”Rallou Manou” Dance School.

She has released two albums of her own compositions Anamkhara (2009) and 7Fish (2014)


The term "contemporary modal music" has been created by Ross Daly and describes the sum total of contemporary compositions created today by musicians working within various modal traditions. This music is the continuation of the procedure of modal composing through a very free perspective and is not at all connected with the goal of "preserving traditions". It is the contemporary expression of the beauty of modality (phrase-orientated non-harmonic music which often employs non-tempered intervals).


Kelly's lyras are made by Stelios Petrakis and Leonidas Spanos.

The design of this type of lyra was created by Ross Daly in 1991. The first one was constructed in Athens by Nikos Bras. This lyra has three playing strings (A-D-G) and 12 to 22 sympathetic strings.

kelly thoma
kelly thoma


Featuring: Ross Daly, Zohar Fresco, Pedram Khavar Zamini, Giorgos Manolakis, Aris Kornelakis, Efren Lopez, Pavlos Spyropoulos, Sofia Efkleidou, Taxiarhis Georgoulis, Giannis Papatzanis, Miriam Encinas Laffitte.

...upcoming concerts 2017:

February 24, Ross Daly Trio with Zohar Fresco, Noree Snede, Denmark
February 25, Ross Daly Trio with Zohar Fresco , Aalborg, Denmark
February 26, Ross Daly Trio with Zohar Fresco, Copenhagen, Denmark 

March 1-13, Tour in Australia with Paddy Montgomery and Matt Stonehouse
March 1st - Modal Music Workshop, SomaChi Yoga, Fitzroy
March 3rd -Theatre Royal, Castlemaine 
March 4th -  "Bohemia", Collingwood Town Hall, Collingwood, Melbourne 
March 5th - Caravan Club, Oakleigh  
March 10th -The Hellenic Club, Canberra ACT
March 11th - The Unorthodox Church of Groove, Newcastle NSW (double bill with Villa Navio from Portugal)
March 12th - Parramasala Festival, Sydney NSW
March 17-24, Tokso with Bijan Chemirani, Oslo, Norway
March 26-30, with Mike Harrist and Tev Stevig Boston, USA

April 10-21,  Labyrinth Catalunya, Cardedeu, Barcelona

May 4-8, Ross Daly-Kelly Thoma duet in Cyprus
May 13-21, Ross Daly-Kelly Thoma duet , Berlin, Koln, Mannheim, Germany
May 25, with Efren Lopez, Miriam Encinas Laffitte and Meira Segal, Festival Etnomusic. Centre Cultural La Beneficència, València, Spain

July 26, Ross Daly Trio (with Marijia Katsouna) Limnos island, Greece

Read her interview at "The Goddess of the Hunt"

 Links :