Full: Strange Connections
Programmed by Graeme Vanderstoel
Three duets span global performance practices. Movement artist and storyteller Leonard Pitt and composer, performer, and instrument inventor Paul Dresher perform together for the first time since 1983, creating a new work. Sarod player Manik Khan, son of Ali Akbar Khan, is joined by tabla player Sudhakar Vaidyanathan to perform Indian classical music. And dancer Tandy Beal performs two new works accompanied by her husband, composer Jon Scoville.
In 1981, Paul Dresher and Leonard Pitt were founding members of George Coates Performance Works, with whom they toured internationally and collaborated on The Way of How (1981) and are are (1983). Pitt and Dresher share a deep involvement with the performing arts of Indonesia, having met in 1974 while studying at the Center for World Music.
Manik Khan, the youngest son of Ali Akbar Khan, started his training on the sarod at the age of thirteen. With his brother Alam, he teaches at the Ali Akbar College of Music to preserve the family’s legacy, which dates back to the court of Emperor Akbar in the sixteenth century. Sudhakar Vaidyanathan began his training in tabla under Shri Satish Tare at the age of eight, and continues to study tabla under the guidance of Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri. He has played at Davies Symphony Hall and across the Bay Area.
Tandy Beal, “a choreographer of taste and intelligence . . . with a sure sense of theater” (New York Times), began her career touring worldwide with Alwin Nikolais Dance Theatre, performing off Broadway, and appearing as a guest with Bobby McFerrin, with whom she has worked for over thirty years. In addition, Beal served as artistic director for the Moscow Circus in Japan for two years and for the Pickle Family Circus for ten years. Jon Scoville’s scores have been commissioned by Oakland Ballet, Høvik Ballet (Norway), Compagnie Hors Taxes (Paris), Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company, Armazém Companha de Teatro in Rio de Janeiro, and others. Scoville is a recipient of a California Arts Council Composer’s Fellowship and grants from the Salt Lake Arts Commission and Santa Cruz Arts Council.