London, England – Barbican Centre will present X-Bloc Reunion, May 23-31. It is a revolutionary mix of ethnic and urban music from the former Eastern Bloc. From wild Gypsy Balkan brass, to seductive Silk Road vocals, from Tuvan punk and Russian ska to Bulgarian voices and Czech Electronica.Fri 23: Djivan Gasparyan / Alim Qasimov / Sergey Starostin
The musical gods of Armenia and Azerbaijan perform with Russia’s leading folk singer and musician Sergey Starostin.
Sat 24: Boban Markovic & Frank London / Laikó Félix
First UK appearance by Boban Markovic, leader of Serbia’s biggest and best Gypsy brass band, plus Klezmatics trumpeter Frank London. Hungarian violinist extraordinaire Laikó Félix
opens the evening.
Sun 25: Sui Vesan / Iva Bittova
The Czech Republic and Slovakia are reunited for one night in the performances of two extraoridary female artists.
Sun 25: Leningrad
Moscow’s hippest music export make their first ever trip to London, mixing elements of ska, punk, and jaz with a unique dissident edge.
Mon 26: Eastern Divas – Sainkho / Esma Redžepova / Sevara
A holy trinity of divas – ethereal seductive and surreal; Tuva’s Sainkho, Sereva, the new voice from Uzbekistan, and Queen of Gypsy singers Esma Redžepova.
Mon 26: Yat-Kha – Storm Over Asia
Tuvan punk band Yat-Kha perform a live film soundtrack to Vsevold Pudovkin’s 1928 silent masterpiece Storm Over Asia
Thu 29: Koutev Ensemble & Theodosii Spassov
Philip Koutev was the genius behinnd Le Mysèter Voix Bulgares and this group is the forerunner of that tradition and bearer of his name, today. A spectacular show performed with female choir, folk orchestra and innovative Kaval player Theodosii Spassov.
Fri 30: Mostar Sevdah Reunion & Ljiljana Buttler / Merita Halili
Representing the mulit-ethnic sould of Bosnia, Mostar Sevdah Reunion perform herer with veteran Gypsy sinder Ljiljana Buttler. The show is opened by Albanian star Merita Halili.
Fri 30: Anatoly Vapirov Quintet featuring Tomasz Stanko
Bulgaria-based Russian free-jazz saxophonist Anatoly Vapirov performs his imspired improsiations with his band, featuring the Polish trumpeter Tomasz Stanko.
Sat 31: Goran Bregović – Tolerant Heart
Sarajevo-born composer Goran Bregovic’s stunning new work features his Weddings and Funerals band, an Andaulz Orchestra from Morocco, Russian choir and singers Amnia from Tunsia and Dana International from Israel.
Plus talks, workshops, films & free music and dance featuring Kharkov Klezmer (Ukraine), Jony Iliev (Bulgaria), Szascsavas (Transylvania), Oi Va Voi (UK), Ecstacy of St Theresa, Pavel Fajt (Czech Republic), Stepandia (Siberia), Fanfare Ciocarlia (Romania), Coxless Pair (Siberia), Amina Sound System, Naming the Golem (Hungary), Chudobah (Poland), Orkestar Agusevi (Macedonia) and the Akhatamov Dance Group (Armenia).
Tickets for X-BLOC REUNION are on sale now from the Barbican Box Office 020 7638 8891. www.barbican.org.uk/xbloc
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.