The Herb Alpert School of Music at CalArts presents the annual World Music and Dance Festival, a weekend-long (April 28-30) celebration of musical traditions from around the globe. Nine free outdoor performances will grace the Wild Beast pavilion, with music and dance by CalArts’ music groups—including the Gamelan, Tabla and World Percussion Ensembles—led by CalArts faculty, including Nyoman Wenten, Nanik Wenten, Swapan Chaudhuri and Ustad Aashish Khan.
Opening the weekend’s celebrations is a duet between special guest Didik Nini Thowok, Indonesia’s most famous cross-gender master dancer, and eminent dancer and choreographer Maria Darmaningsih. The guest artists perform Gambyong Pangkur, a dance that first emerged in the Mangkunegaran Royal Court in Surakarta.
From the press release:
A master of Indonesian mask and cross gender dance with more than 40 years of experience in pop, traditional, and contemporary music, Thowok’s performance will launch his two-week residency at the Institute, during which he will lead an exploratory lab workshop with CalArts artists, host a discussion with CalArts’ Queer Artists Community, conduct class visits, and present his work at venues throughout Los Angeles.
Closing out the weekend is a performance from Aza West African Ensemble, led by faculty Nani Agbeli and Andrew Grueschow. The ensemble presents instrumental music, songs and dancing from the Ewe, Ga and Dagomba traditions of West Africa (Ghana) alongside special guests Volta Drum Dance.
The CalArts World Music and Dance Festival, part of the Wild Beast Concert Series, is free and open to the public, but reservations are requested. Visitors are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets.