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Conduction No. 129: Calligraphy' Concert

News Release
October 16, 2002
The Bowery Poetry Club presents
Orchestra Members: Bailo Bah (tambin), Tarik Benbrahim (oud), Lotfi Gamal (qanoon), Balla Kouyate (balafon), Xiao-fen Min (pipa), Seido Salifoski (dumbek), Zhipeng Shen (gaohu), Yacouba Sissoko (kora) & Shu-ni Tsou (dizi)
Conducted By Lawrence D. "Butch" Morris
Tuesday, November 19, 2002 at 8: 00 & 9: 30 p.m.

On November 19th 2002, the Bowery Poetry Club presents "CONDUCTION No. 129, CALLIGRAPHY" concert. Mr. Lawrence D. "Butch" Morris will be conducting master musicians from China, Egypt, Guinea, Macedonia, Mali, Morocco & Taiwan.

Mr. Morris is one of the leading innovators in the confluence of jazz, new music, improvisation and contemporary classical music. As a composer, Mr. Morris is widely known for his notated compositions and has been especially acclaimed for pioneering and developing the art of Conduction:

Conduction (conducted improvisation/interpretation) is a vocabulary of ideographic signs and gestures activated to modify or construct a real-time musical arrangement or composition. Each sign and gesture transmits generative information for interpretation, and provides instantaneous possibilities for altering or initiating harmony, melody, rhythm, articulation, phrasing or form.

Employing more than 2,000 musicians in 16 countries and 55 cities, resulting in 22 CDs over a 16-year period, Conduction has amply demonstrated its capacity for cultural diplomacy by uniting communities and serving as a powerful example of a new social-logic based on collective interpretation and personal interaction. In its ceaseless investigation of an extra dimension that transcends style and category, it has proven itself supplemental to the entire scope of musical and artistic endeavor.

Tonight, a new sound will emerge.

For Information About the Orchestra, Please Contact:
Yuan Zhou
Independent Producer
(646) 456-7361

For Reservations, Please Contact:
The Bowery Poetry Club
Admissions: $15
Location & Direction:
308 Bowery @ Bleecker Street, right across from CBGB’s. You can take 6 train (Bleecker street stop) or F train (2nd Avenue stop) to get there.
Biography of Participating Artists

Bailo Bah (Tambin)
Bailo Bah was born in Guinea in 1946 from a Vietnamese mother and a Peul (Fulani) father. Bailo learned to play the Tambin from his grandfather in his village. One day his grandfather called everybody from the village and beyond and declared to everyone that he was tired and he wasn't going to play anymore and that this young boy, Bailo, was his successor. A ceremony ensued and Bailo played all night until sunrise. At 15, Bailo left his village to go to Dakar, looking to find work using his musical abilities. The trip that started then lasted many years and took him through much of West-Africa: Senegal, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Sierra Leone, all the way to the Ivory Coast where he became one of the greatest flutists in this African musical powerhouse city. Bailo participated in countless festivals, recordings, and tours around the world. He was the flutist for the Ballets Koteba for 22 years and toured with the famous show "Africa Oye."

Tarik Bendrahim (Oud)
A Master Oud player, Mr. Bendrahim hails from Morocco. He’s currently a member of Henry Threadgill’s "Zooid" ensemble.

Lotfi Gamal (Qanoon)
A Master Qanoon player, Gamal hails from Egypt. A "melody maker", he is most proud of his collaboration with German composer Omar Kharyard, and his primary interest is to play with musicians around the world to create. As a side note, he’s also capable of playing Nay & Oud.

Balla Kouyate (Balafon)
Nicknamed "Balafon Mania", one of the greatest Balafon players from the Djely griot tradition in Mali. Currently he’s a member of Mamadou Diabate Ensemble and Yacouba Sissoko’s Siya Ensemble.

Xiao-Fen Min (Pipa)
Xiao-fen Min is a virtuoso on the Pipa. She was a Pipa soloist for the Nanjing, National Music Orchestra, and was winner of numerous Pipa competitions throughout China. Known for her virtuosity and fluid style, she has received acclaim for her classical, contemporary and Jazz performances. Min’s solo recording, "The Moon Rising" was hailed by BBC Music Magazine as "one of the best CDs of 1996". Her recording "Viper Improvisations with Derek Bailey" was one of the Wire’s "albums of the Year" in 1998. She also premiered Tan Dun’s Peony Pavilion, an opera with director Peter Sellars.

Seido Salifoski (Dumbek)
Macedonian dumbek virtuoso Seido Salifoski plays music from his Rom (Gypsy) lineage as well as Turkish, Yugoslavia and Albanian traditions. He is the foremost dumbek player in New York and has performed extensively for the past 12 years with players such as Omar Faruk Tekbilek (Turkey)and Yuri Yunakov (Bulgaria). He is featured on numerous Balkan, Klezmer and new music recordings.

Zhipeng Shen (Gao Hu)
Mr. Zhipeng Shen joined Liaoning Song & Dance Company in 1959. Because of his exceptional musical ability, he was appointed as the "1st Violinist" in the orchestra early in his career. As a versatile player, he has mastered the Erhu, Gaohu and Banhu. He took on further responsibility as the leader of the orchestra. In recognition for his extraordinary contribution to Chinese traditional music, he has been selected as a committee member of Chinese National Association of Musicians and an executive committee member of Chinese Folk & Traditional Music Research Center. As part of the Chinese Culture Exchange Program, Mr. Shen was often invited to join the "State Department Tour" as soloist or "1st violinist" in orchestra setting, and he played over 20 countries. His performance was well received by the general public, and welcomed by the leaders of various nations. Besides being an established performer, Mr. Shen has composed many traditional musical pieces, such as "Joy of Spring" and "Dreams of Sarlbu", which became part of the classic repertoire. At the turn of this new millennium, Mr. Shen came to the United States. To further his musical journey, he is looking forward to working with musicians from other nations, and bringing Chinese traditional music to the forefront of the world stage.

Yacouba Sissoko (Kora)
Yacouba Sissoko is a Master Kora player from the Djely griot tradition. He was born in Kita, Mali. His grandfather, Samakoun Tounkara, began teaching Yacouba when he was 12 years old. They raised Yacouba and educated him in his griot heritage and in many lessons about life. Yacouba attended the Institut National des Arts du Mali in Bamako. After his graduation, he played with artists like Taye and Oumou Sacko, Haja Soumano, Djallou Demba, Ami Koita, Fantani Koure, Kandia Kouyate and l'Ensemble Instrumental du Mali. In 1993, Souleymane Koli, the leader of the Ensemble Koteba of Abidjan recruited him. Yacouba spend the next 5 years performing all over the world with this 45-piece band. He is in demand as one of the best kora players in the world, playing with Jazz, Latin and R & B bands as well as traditional African ceremonies. As leader of his own band, Siya, and member of the group Super Mande, Yacouba continues to record with many musicians, including the groups Source, Tamalalou and Fula Flute.

Shu-ni Tsou (Dizi)
Shu-ni Tsou started learning to play Dizi at the age of ten at National Taiwan Junior College of Performing Arts, and went on to win the National Championship on Dizi at the 1993 Taiwan National Competition. Ms. Tsou has toured internationally since the age of thirteen, and has worked with renowned artists such as Evelyn Glennie (Scotland), Diali Djimo Kouyate (Senegal) and Sandeep Das (India). Shu-ni Tsou’s interest in inter-cultural music communication can be observed in her most recent works. Fusing traditional techniques with modern concepts, she has been working with experimental performance troupe Noumenal Lingam. She is constantly in search of new colors and combinations in her music and remains eager to explore new modes of expression.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Butch Morris Conducting African, Asian, Middle Eas
  • Event Date: 11/19/2002
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