headshot of maya keren
photo by Sophie Starr
Maya Keren is a Brooklyn-based pianist, vocalist, composer, and songwriter from Philadelphia. They are interested in the process of environing people, voices, instruments, and sounds in ways that invite connection with one’s erotic instinct, embody compassionate and queer relations with the self and the collective, and destabilize learned systems of domination.

These ideas have developed non-linearly throughout space and time. The Creative Music Program in Philly provided precious visions of potential artistic futures, traversed with dear friends John, Julian, Micah, and Zach. Time spent at the Banff International Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music expanded the wild and abundant possibilities of radical art-making. Mutual Mentorship for Musicians and the Ida B. Wells JUST Data Lab served as grounds for coalition and collective inquiry into the power structures that determine who and what is beautiful in our musical ecosystem and our world. Angelica Sanchez and Kris Davis offered kindness, wisdom, and guidance along the way. And time spent playing in projects like Julien Chang and the Deep Green, Moon Moon, and Who’s Lily solidified a group artistic practice through an intentional commitment to growing together and seeing what feels and sounds good on that journey. And of course, everything traces back through silver threads – adrienne maree to Octavia and Audre, Nicole and Geri to Monk to Mary Lou – the web is infinite.

Maya graduated from Princeton University in 2022 with a Bachelor’s degree in Music and a certificate in African American Studies. For their independent work, Maya organized a three-part event series dedicated to the lineage of communal environing, hosting a Quaker Meeting for Worship, Butch Morris-style conduction, and musical celebration within and around a mobile pvc-pipe sukkah structure whose walls exhibited Maya’s research and personal archive. Currently Maya is writing songs, loops, and words for their band Careful In The Sun, drawing inspiration from Gwendolyn Brooks, Clarice Lispector, Pinegrove, and the Wissahickon.

say hello! mayapkeren@gmail.com