March 18, 2006

Alash in Ridgefield

We took the long drive down to Ridgefield last night to see Alash at the Enchanted Garden Conservatory of the Arts. Hey - I just found an Alash myspace - I think people are so charmed by this group that the geeks in the crowd independently set up these websites and resources for the group. Go to either to get some sounds.....

First off, Alash was incredible. The leader, Kongar-ool Ondar, is a well known and established artist (featured in the film Genghis Blues) who heads up this enselmble and seems to have taken these four young (20's) under his wing - teaching them the magic. It's all very Karate Kid except with Tuvan throat singing. Add in a Fulbright Scholar, living in Tuva, american born translator (Sean) who was charming, cute, cut a dashing figure in his own Tuvan garb, and is himself learning to throat sing (he joined in for the encore) and it was a delightful evening.

And while Alash is wonderfully competant and (I assume) authentic, part of their charm is surely the energy, humor and grace with which they comport themselves. They are delighted to be touring and playing their music, and their delight is infectious.

Broadcast live on WPKN - Cliff Furnald was running around, I semi-recognized him from years ago when I was a WPKN listener and went to more folkie things in the New Haven / Bridgeport area.

An interesting sidelight, a friend from my production work world is an arts community liasons (community theater, events planning) for the Connecticut Folklife Project which brought Alash to this space and I really should look him up and say hello via email. Our paths have not crossed at work in over a year.....

2 comments:

cliff said...

Hey, Jude....

Glad to hear folks were enjoying the show. We had a great time putting the broadcast together... live radio is so cool because SO much might go wrong... raw adreneline running all the time, hence my "running around" the whole time
(-:
cliff furnald

Jude said...

Hey, a celebrity blog sighting!

For the record, I am not a regular WPKN listener these days only because the signal does not carry all that well to Hartford (I used to live in Waterbury) - but I do tune to 89.5 when I am driving around in that part of the state.....