The Barcelona Experience
Teatre Grec 01/07
If you have had even a little contact with African culture, you will have heard of griots, the depositories of the oral tradition of the Mandinga people, who are present in various African countries. They usually pass on a repertoire of music, songs and traditional stories through their families. The three members of the Trio Da Kali belong to long dynasties of griots who got together in London one day and formed a sort of super group, on the initiative of Lucy Durán, an ethnomusicologist with a PhD from the University of London, and the support of the Aga Khan Music Initiative. In their first album, Ladilikan, the newly formed Trio Da Kali produced a surprising sound by recording with the Kronos Quartet, a renowned formation who have become one of the most daring ensembles in their genre. You may remember them from the 1990 Grec or the spectacular opening concert for the 2019 Grec.
Now, the Trio Da Kali and Lucy Durán, an expert in projects that involve traditional musicians from all over the world, are bringing a unique show to Barcelona, based on the popular music of West Africa, created for the occasion with musicians from the city. The trio will be performing with the Martín Meléndez String Quartet, an innovative Barcelona ensemble, reminiscent of the daring spirit of the Kronos Quartet. They are led by the Cuban musician Martín Meléndez, a cellist who is established in Barcelona. The Trio Da Kali and the Martín Meléndez String Quartet will be accompanied by accomplished artists from the Barcelona music scene who are of African or Afro-American descent, including the vocalist Nakany Kanté, an artist whose roots are in Guinea Conakry who has become an internationally renowned figure in Mandinga Afropop; Saharawi singer Aziza Brahim; Nan Mercader, the drummer and percussionist from Banyoles who is a specialist in flamenco, salsa and rumba, among many other rhythms; and Jurandir Santanai, the guitarist from Bahia, a genius of Brazilian music, jazz and sounds with African roots who has been an essential part of the Barcelona music scene for years.
The Trio Da Kali will be undergoing a total immersion in Barcelona, as the ensemble will be doing an artistic residency in the Fabra i Coats: Creation Factory, where they will be working with local musicians, in order to show city audiences the best of Mandinga music hybridised with local talent and always under the direction of Lucy Durán. Take note of this ethnomusicologist, because during the festival she will be offering a talk on her experience as a music producer and she will be running a participative workshop for all audiences, but especially for children, as well as some rehearsals that will be open to the public.
A Grec 2021 Festival de Barcelona, Slow Walk Music and L’Impresa Management co-production.
In cooperation with the Fabra i Coats: Fàbrica de creació.
Concept: Javi Zarco Director: Lucy Durán Trio Da Kali music director: Lassana Diabaté Trio Da Kali: Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté (vocals), Mamadou Kouyaté (ngoni), Lassana Diabaté (balafon) Guest musicians: Nakany Kanté, Aziza Brahim, Jurandir Santana, Nan Mercader String Quartet: Martín Meléndez String Quartet Technical directors: Fernando Redondo "Dinky", Aaron Feder Photography: Colin U'Ren
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