Freer and Sackler Galleries » Performances

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Wayang Golek Puppets: The Miraculous Birth of Hanuman, the Monkey King

The supernatural birth of the famous monkey-king Hanuman, a leading character in ancient Hindu mythology, is retold in English through Sundanese wayang golek. This puppet-theater tradition is known for its delicately carved and elaborately painted wooden puppets. Master puppeteer Kathy Foley from the University of California, Santa Cruz, is accompanied by gamelan musicians from the Indonesian College of the Arts (STSI) in Bandung, led by drummer Undang Sumarna (University of California, Santa Cruz) with Henry Spiller (University of California, Davis). Foley has performed Sundanese puppetry for more than thirty years in Indonesia, Thailand, and Great Britain and at museums and universities across the United States. Categories: Performances. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Meyer Auditorium. Cost: Free. Saturday, October 4, 2014, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM.

Dance and Music from West Java: Indonesian College of the Arts

More than a dozen dancers and musicians from West Java perform traditional and contemporary songs and dances representing the island’s Sundanese culture. The program ranges from elegant aristocratic songs from the ancient Pajajaran kingdom to twentieth-century creations, such as the elaborate Peacock Dance and the popular social dance known as jaipongan. Classic dances interpret famous scenes from the Hindu epics the Ramayana and Mahabharata. A new form of collective dance-drumming (rampak kendang) simultaneously displays percussive and choreographic virtuosity. Categories: After Five. Performances. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Meyer Auditorium. Cost: Free tickets required. Saturday, October 4, 2014, 7:30 PM.

Student Angklung Orchestra

Hear 300 students from Washington-area elementary schools play tuned bamboo rattles (angklung) from West Java, led by members of the Indonesian College of the Arts (STSI) in Bandung. The rattles traditionally accompany processions and are closely associated with Dewi Sri, the Sundanese goddess of rice. For this performance, the young students play music ranging from traditional and contemporary Sundanese songs to American popular tunes. Categories: Performances. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Steps and plaza (rain location: Meyer Auditorium). Cost: Free. Sunday, October 5, 2014, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM.

Gamelan Music of West Java

Expert musicians from the Indonesian College of the Arts (STSI) in Bandung demonstrate ancient and contemporary styles of music for the Sundanese gamelan—a set of bronze gongs and xylophones similar to those found elsewhere in Indonesia—and teach volunteers how to play the instruments. Categories: Performances. Workshops. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Meyer Auditorium. Cost: Free. Sunday, October 5, 2014, 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM.

Musicians from Marlboro I

Grammy Award-winning violist Kim Kashkashian and Marina Piccinini, the first flutist to receive a prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant, join young virtuosos from the prestigious Marlboro Music Festival to perform music by Beethoven, Debussy, and Hungarian composers György Kurtág and Endre Szervánszky. Completing the ensemble are David McCarroll and Nikki Chooi, violins; Wenting Kang, viola; Karen Ouzounian, cello; and Sivan Magen, harp. The complete concert program features Beethoven’s String Quintet in C Major, op. 29; Kurtág’s Officium breve in memoriam Andreæ Szervánszky, op. 28; Szervánszky’s Trio for Flute, Violin, and Viola; and Debussy’s rarely heard Sonata for Flute, Viola, and Harp, L. 137. Kashkashian won the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Classical Instrumental Solo with her 2012 album Kurtág/Ligeti: Music for Viola. Categories: After Five. Performances. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Meyer Auditorium. Cost: Free. Thursday, October 16, 2014, 7:30 PM.

Festival Pablo Casals Prades Collective

On their first-ever tour of the United States, top musicians from the venerable Pablo Casals Festival—held since 1950 in the French village of Prades in Pyrenees Mountains—perform an Asian/French program. Included are Debussy’s Violin Sonata, Fauré’s Quartet for Piano and Strings no. 1, Isang Yun’s “Piri” for solo clarinet, Jaejoon Ryu’s “Madrigal” for clarinet and strings, Hosokawa’s “Threnody” for solo viola, and Tchaikovsky’s piano solo “Autumn Song,” arranged for clarinet and strings by Toru Takemitsu. The international cast of star artists features violinist Kyoko Takezawa and violist Nobuko Imai from Japan, violinist Elina Vähälä and cellist Arto Noras from Finland, Israeli pianist Itamar Golan, and French clarinetist Michel Lethiec, the ensemble’s artistic director. Categories: After Five. Performances. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Meyer Auditorium. Cost: Free. Thursday, October 23, 2014, 7:30 PM.

Bamboo Brilliance: A Mujuan Shakuhachi Celebration

Japanese bamboo flute (shakuhachi) virtuoso Kurahashi Yodo II leads an ensemble celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Mujuan Shakuhachi Dojo, a school founded by his father in Kyoto. The group, comprising master students from across the United States, performs traditional solos (honkyoku) from the Edo period (1615‒1868) along with ensemble and contemporary pieces. Joining Kurahashi are Ronnie Seldin, James Schlefer, Stan Richardson, and Phil James, accompanied on koto and sangen by Yoko Hiraoka, Masayo Ishigure, Junko Shigeta, and Miyuki Yoshikami. The American students of Kurahashi’s school have helped created a US following for this musical tradition, founded in seventeenth-century Japan by wandering Zen monks. Categories: After Five. Performances. Venue: Freer Gallery. Event Location: Meyer Auditorium. Cost: Free. Saturday, October 25, 2014, 7:30 PM.