Mother or stepmother? Anything but old Europe – Photos

May25,2024
group of men playing musical instruments

Europa: mother or stepmother? The question is legitimate and topical in view of the electoral appointment at the beginning of June.

But – beyond who will sit in the new parliament and the clash between pro-Europeans and sovereignists – the question above all concerns cultural discourse and our roots. And it affects the way of conceiving the arts and specifically the field of investigation that concerns us, that of the so-called improvised music of African-American origin.

And it means – as Joe Lovano, artistic director of the event, one of the greats of the saxophone, explains – «being yourself in music, with love and respect for its history. It is a declaration of intent, the representation of today with its creative possibilities. All the artists involved live in the present to project themselves towards the future.”

Thus, alongside the big Americans (the master of the electric six strings John Scofield; the historic percussionist of the Art Ensemble of Chicago Famoudou Don Moye; the alto sax specialist Bobby Watson) and Africans (the performance of the veteran Abdullah Ibrahim, guru of the piano originally from Cape Town), European names also appear: among these the Albanian singer Elina Duni, the Franco-Syrian flautist Naïssam Jalal and the Roman double bass player Federica Michisanti, in whose group the renowned Lyon clarinettist Louis Sclavis appears.

Andy Emler’s MegaOctet also comes from France. In No Rush! (La Buissonne, Ducale distribution) the pianist and composer mixes jazz-rock and Frank Zappa, impressionism and Stravinsky-style passages. And, thanks to timbres, colors and atmospheres, he manages to amaze with his pocket orchestra.

Elina Duni

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