Alash plus Sun Ra Arkestra Monday, June 18
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Tuva is a small Russian Republic, in eastern Siberia, bordering Mongolia. The remote location and Soviet-era travel restrictions limited visitors, but also allowed Tuvans to preserve their unique musical traditions. Throat singing developed among Tuva’s semi-nomadic herders. In throat singing, a single vocalist produces two distinct pitches simultaneously. It’s been compared to using the voice like a human bagpipe--producing a low fundamental note, like a drone, while adding a higher series of harmonics to create the melody. The sounds of whistling birds, bubbling streams, howling wolves and blowing wind are often incorporated into the music. The music also is closely tied to Tuvan spiritual beliefs.
The Alash Ensemble, founded in 1999 at the Kyzyl Arts College in the capital city of Tuva, are among the incredible Tuvan throat singers who are beginning to share their region’s deep-rooted musical heritage with audiences around the world. The group, originally known as Changy-Xaya, learned about traditional Tuvan music from their families as well as the well-known master Xoomeizhi (throat singer) Kongar-ool Ondar, as they also began to learn about Western classical music and such concepts as harmony, theory and staff notation. The members of Alash perform on traditional Tuvan instruments as well as hybrids of Tuvan instruments and violins and cellos.
For this special event, Philadelphia Jazz/improvisation mainstays Marshall Allen, Elliot Levin, and other members of Sun Ra Arkestra, share the stage with the guests from Tuva!
* Monday, June 18, 2007 @ 7:00 pm
4014 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104