Alim Qasimov Ensemble, Homayun Sakhi Trio, and Kronos Quartet to offer workshops, lecture-demos and concerts on college and university campuses across the United States
Geneva, Switzerland, 8 February 2012 - Following the success of its 2010 University Residency Series, the Aga Khan Music Initiative is launching a new programme of workshops, lecture-demonstrations and concert performances at seven prestigious American colleges and universities: Brandeis, Dartmouth, Emory, Harvard, Stanford, University of California, Berkeley, and University of Maryland.
The programme kicks off in early February at University of California, Berkeley with a concert featuring the pioneering collaborative work of the Alim Qasimov Ensemble and the Kronos Quartet, America’s premiere new music quartet. The Qasimov Ensemble and Kronos Quartet will subsequently visit Stanford, Emory, and the University of Maryland.
A second artistic collaboration will premiere at Dartmouth College and Brandeis University in early March. The trio of Homayun Sakhi, the outstanding Afghan rubab player of his generation, Salar Nader, one of the young international stars of Indian percussion, and Ken Zuckerman, a long-time disciple of the great sarod master Ali Akbar Khan, will perform raga music from North India and Afghanistan. The Afghan rubab and sarod are kindred instruments that, despite common origins in Mughal musical culture, are now rarely played together. Through the popular convention of jugalbandi—a duet of two soloists--Sakhi and Zuckerman revitalize the dazzling achievements of Mughal cultural synthesis. During the Dartmouth-Brandeis residency period Homayun Sakhi and Ken Zuckerman will also offer lecture-demonstrations at Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, respectively, and the full trio will hold a workshop and perform a concert at the Asia Society, New York City.
The Aga Khan Music Initiative and the San Francisco-based Kronos Quartet have collaborated since 2007 on a project that brings the quartet together with leading musicians from Central Asia and the Middle East to compose, arrange, and perform tradition-based new music. The initial results of this work were released on the award-winning Smithsonian Folkways CD-DVD Rainbow: Kronos Quartet with Alim and Fargana Qasimov and Homayun Sakhi.
The University Residency Programme advances the Aga Khan Music Initiative’s mission of encouraging intercultural and interregional musical collaboration, promoting education about the music and culture of the Islamic world, and introducing leading musicians from Central Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa to Western audiences.