Next, I followed with a short traditional tabla solo in Teentaal, which Xenia followed with Heather Hindman's RRR (2014) for piano and live electronics. We concluded the first half of the concert with terre, a short improvisation.
Next, I played Tawnie Olson's provocative Something to Say (2014), for tabla and fixed media (available for download here).
Xenia followed with Ed Bennett's piano solo, Bright White Lights. The piece makes use of relatively simple piano preparations to achieve some really evocative effects. Here is Xenia's performance of the piece in Vancouver:
We concluded the concert with the piece that started it all, so to speak - Nicole Lizée's Metal Jacket (2005) for tabla and harmonium. Here is a video from the Vancouver performance at the Western Front:
Continuing the whirlwind tour, the next morning we were off to Victoria. We were warmly welcomed by Chris Reiche, who gave us a quick walking tour of the Victoria downtown (so I could get a coffee), which was really nice. The concert took place at Openspace, which is a beautiful gallery and concert venue. There were some tabla players in the audience that night, which gave the concert a special vibe. I'm told that my tabla solo was more energetic than usual that night!
The next morning, we were off to Gabriola Island. Chris was kind to drive us to up Nanaimo, which made for an incredibly beautiful road trip. In Nanaimo, we had an amazing lunch before catching the ferry to Gabriola. The Gabriola concert took place at a new artist-run store/cafe/art gallery/concert venue; it's quite an amazing place, and I recommend anyone in the area to visit.
On the way back, we grabbed a Nanaimo bar in Nanaimo ... and boy, was that a mistake. Not good! Otherwise, the food we had on tour was incredible, including a big first - nettle 'saag', which was very tasty (homemade by our hosts in Gabriola)! All in all, this tour was a wonderful adventure. A big thank you to our hosts and to the audiences who welcomed us so warmly! Alberta and BC are truly beautiful parts of the country and it was a real pleasure to be able to visit. Until the next time!
Videos courtesy Ben Wilson of the Western Front. Celebrating the great lineage of experimental piano works over the Western Front’s 40+ year history, 88 Tuned Bongos champions today’s most cutting-edge pianists and keyboard projects. Photos courtesy of Caroline Tabah (plus some from my phone camera).