Browsing: World Music

REVIEW: of The Anchoress, a world premiere of a new musical monodrama/song cycle composed by David Serkin Ludwig with text by Katie Ford, performed by soprano Hyunah Yu, accompanied by saxophone quartet PRISM and ancient-instrument ensemble Piffaro; on Wednesday, October 17, at the Perelman Theatre of Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, and on Thursday, October 18, at New York City’s DiMenna Center for Classical Music (the latter performance reviewed here); and INTERVIEWS: with composer David Ludwig and poet Katie Ford. The impulse to retreat from the world in search of spiritual insight or purity has manifested throughout human history. Twenty-one centuries of Christianity…

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In October, the Nazeris (father and son, Shahram and Hafez) tour Canada with Untold, the latest chapter of the great Rumi Symphony project, an original fusion of occidental classical music and Persian traditional music presented by this famous family of Iranian artists. The project aims to promote love and peace by setting the widely appreciated works of the 13th-century mystic poet, Rumi, to music. “When I began this adventure, I imagined bringing together the distinctive personality and freedom of Persian music, the music of my culture, and the formal and very different expression of Occidental classical music,” says artistic director…

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Kleztory is a stunning example of the power and the universal nature of the language of klezmer music. Strange to say, this internationally renowned quintet does not have any members of Jewish origin. From Russia, Western Canada and Quebec, the five musicians came together for their shared love of traditional klezmer music – into which, however, they do not hesitate to take the liberty of weaving their diverse personalities. Their return from Trondheim, Norway, where they will participate in a festival of Jewish culture, will mark the beginning of a rich season of travel and gatherings. Sidewalks to Studios Clarinettist…

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PREVIEW: of the new opera, PermaDeath, by Cerise Lim Jacobs and Dan Visconti, which will play Boston’s Cutler Majestic Theatre for three performances, September 27, 28 and 29, 2018. The theater dims. A martial blare and glistening orchestral clamor suddenly rives the murmuring darkness, and a bewildering vista of strange, vast landscape floods the stage. Two beautiful, luminous, titanic beings – the sibling gods Apollo and Artemis – are in pitched battle with the massive, earthen Niobe and her fourteen grotesque offspring. The stuff of mythic dreams? Yes. But it’s also the planned dazzler of an opening for the new…

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Montreal’s reputation as a major platform for the promotion of world music has only been enhanced by the proliferation of musical gatherings that celebrate cultural collaboration. Here is an overview of some highlights of the 2018-2019 season. Nuits d’Afrique Nuits d’Afrique opens the season on Sept. 5 with a varied We MusiK program at Club Balattou animated by artists Élété and Ilam with the participation of several invited artists. The next day, the Rythmes au féminin (Feminine Rhythms) series presents an evening of traditional Guadeloupean music with the Lanmou Fanm Ka group. On Sept. 18, guitarist and author-composer Hampaté presents…

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REVIEW: of the 2018 Bard SummerScape production of Anton Rubinstein’s 1871 opera Demon; and INTERVIEW: with Dr. Leon Botstein (American Symphony Orchestra founder and SummerScape festival artistic director). A warning to all princes of the Caucasus – lock up your daughters! The devil is on the prowl, and he’s feeling amorous. Russian composer Anton Rubinstein’s 1871 opera, Demon, weaves a fascinating yarn of ultimate forbidden love. Based on an earlier, censored poem by Russian poetic genius Mikhail Lermontov, a demon (depicted as the very model of the proud, lonely, passionate Byronic tragic hero) finds himself smitten by the beauty of…

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A warm summer evening at Domain Forget provided the setting for the premiere of Canadian baritone Phillippe Sly’s latest musical venture: Schubert’s Winterreise (A Winter Journey) Klezmer version. The show also marked the debut of his newly formed band “Le Chimera Project” featuring Karine Gordon (trombone), Jonathan Millette (violin) Samuel Carrier (accordion), Félix de l’Étoile (clarinet and bass clarinet) and Roy Rallo (staging). The band was formed about two years ago. Sly was inspired after hearing Samuel Carrier and Félix de l’Étoile perform one piece from Winterreise in an informal setting. He was also fascinated by the theme of an…

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In the mid-to-late-1990s, the music scene in Toronto was growing more aware of what was happening multiculturally. Toronto, known as one of the most diverse cities on the planet, is home to the Small World Music Festival. Alan Davis started Small World to engage more in this trend. “I don’t have any academic training in music,” Davis says. “However, music has always been a constant in my life.” Now in its 17th year, the Small World Music Festival has undergone remarkable growth. Starting “from home,” it has expanded into a 10-day concert series with its own venue as well as…

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From July 20 to 22, Ottawa will welcome the fourth edition of the Capital Ukrainian Festival. More than 500 artists from all corners of the country as well as the United States and Ukraine will ­converge for this three-day weekend event. Jane Kolbe, the organizing committee’s ­president, wants the event to be a truly global and multicultural experience. There will be ­traditional music to be heard, songs to be sung and dances to be seen. But the program also ­offers a wide array of cultural activities for young and old, including a village market, a food court, a beer garden,…

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Well-established in Quebec’s cultural landscape for 30 years, the Carrefour mondial de l’accordéon invites musicians and music fans to gather in Montmagny and celebrate the rich heritage of the instrument. Although it’s often associated with the Parisian musette waltz, the accordion has spread across Europe and the Americas to become an integral part of many music traditions. Its 200-year history has seen several developments that have produced an extensive range of instruments with diverse characteristics. With the aim of preserving this heritage and inspiring the development of the practice, the Carrefour will gather more that 40 musicians from different geographic…

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