Concerts overview

ICTM-Talk: Youssouf Keita & Adilia Yip

A Dialogue of the West African Balafon Tradition
Thursday 30 November 2023 - 19h00
Molière Theatre - Galerie de la Porte de Namur, 3 Square du Bastion, 1050 Bruxelles
THU 30/11

Youssouf Keita, master musician, and Adilia Yip, classically-trained marimbist, wil discuss performing and exploring the traditional music of the balafon, this West-African gourd-resonated xylophone.

Youssouf Keita is a master musician, builder, and teacher of the balafon of the Bobo and Bamana peoples in Mali. As a griot, Youssouf is the storyteller of the oral history of his village, and he promotes the education and preservation of the balafon music heritage. Youssouf is the co-founder of Super Zamanza, the traditional balafon ensemble together with his brother Aly Keita, balafon and jazz musician living in Berlin.

Youssouf’s balafons are owned and performed by many musicians and students in Africa, Europe and Asia, among which Adilia Yip. Adilia is a marimbist and percussionist from Hong Kong, and has taken lessons from Youssouf in his home village Konsankuy back in 2012. She was fascinated by the polyrhythms and coordination techniques of the balafon, and sought for new perspectives for her instrument, the marimba, which was manufactured in the early twentieth century in the United States. The learning process was the core subject of her doctorate in artistic research at the Royal Conservatoire Antwerp. She would like to share her decade-long experience of stepping into the “unknown” balafon world, and how it plays a decisive role in her current music creation and performance.

The session will be given in English and French.

In a friendly atmosphere, seated around the tables in the foyer (bar) of the Théâtre Molière, the ICTM Talks are a program of lessons on six different musical traditions and the culture from which they originate. Each of the six sessions will be devoted to a different style of music, the repertoire and the territory associated with it, and presented by specialists from the world of the arts, academia or enthusiasts of the music style in question.


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