In a hadith narrated by both Bukhari and Muslim, Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) saying, “Allah does not listen so attentively to anything as He listens to the recitation of the Qur’an by a Prophet who recites well with a melodious and audible voice.”
In another hadith, again narrated by both Bukhari and Muslim, Al-Bara’ bin `Azib (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: I heard the Prophet (PBUH) reciting Surat Wat-Teen Waz-Zaitun during the `Isha’ prayer. I have never heard anyone reciting it in a more beautiful voice than his.
Based on such narrations and prophetic practices, Muslims have developed a fine tradition of Qur’anic recitation throughout history by integrating melodic modes into their recitation practices. Melodic modes, called maqam in Arabic, such as Nahawand, Saba, Bayati, Hijaz, Kurd, ‘Ajam are well-known forms of intonations and are commonly used by mainstream Qaris all over the Muslim world. In the 6th level of Respect Qur’an School, students will gain basic maqam skills to beautify their recitation, learn voice management, and improve their sense of tonation through the help of an instrument called Oud.