Start the evening relaxed with Vardan Hovanissian and Emre Gültekin. This duo symbolizes reconciliation between peoples through the melancholy but hopeful sounds of Armenian duduk and saz, Turkey’s iconic instrument. From their friendship that crosses borders, they build bridges between traditions and instruments, styles of play and languages that differ, and show how rewarding it can be to live together even when everything separates us. They draw on a rich repertoire of traditional songs as well as new compositions that do not hesitate to address contemporary themes such as the plight of refugees.
We close the evening with the premiere of the Ektara trio. The Ektara is a baul instrument. It has one string, as indicated in its name which comes from Sanskrit. Like tampura, used in classical Indian music, the ektara sets the keynote for the bauls. The bauls are a minority culture from Bengal, which rejects any social distinctions such as casteism. Poetry, music, song and dance are, in the eyes of the bauls, means to discover the meaning of human existence.
Ektara Trio includes Malabika Brahma (voice and dubki), from Kolkata, Tristan Driessens (oud, lavta), from Antwerp and Emre Gultekin (saz, voice, percussion), Belgian-Turkish born in La Louvière. Three unique musical universes coming together around a single string, the same energy, a single tone, to resonate at the same frequency.