Tamburi Mundi 2014 - "RITUALS"

Poster_Tamburi Mundi 2014_Rituals

9th International Frame Drum Festival (02.08. - 10.08.2014)

The festival is over! Not long ago, the E-Werk was densely populated by colourful, cheerful and noisy participants. Now they are gone. Just shortly after the lecturers and artists had been brought to the train station or the airport, we received the first e-mails:“Thank you, once again it was wounderful!“ The drums are packed, the microphones are stored, the session corner is dismanteled- everything is like as if nothing had happened? Far wrong, for there happened a lot!

I can feel it in my tired legs, but also in this good feeling remembering all those special moments. There was such a lot of music during these last days, an ambiance of contagious good mood, inspite of everything we had to organize. There were so many drum exalted people, short nights, long days and all this was worth it:

Nine deeply impressive concert evenings, 17 concerts (actually 33, as in the Long Night Of The Drums we had concerts on four stages at once, lasting until after midnight), 30 drum workshops where the participants learned, sweated, laughed and grooved. There were courses with frame drum star Glen Velez, some exotic stuff with the Indian master Ganesh Kumar (Kanjira) and with the Portuguese percussionist Rui Silva (Adufe), fully booked beginner's courses with Nora Thiele, cajon courses with the festival director Murat Coşkun and advanced frame drum courses with Yshai Afterman (Israel). Paolo Rosetti taught the Italian Tamburello, Mohsen Taherzadeh the Persian Daf and for the fans of Ireland, Dave Boyd taught some beginner's courses for the Irish Bodhran. The samul nori master Juhong Kim introduced into the world of shaman drumming. The percussionists Philipp Kurzke, Peer Kallis and Heiner (Rico) Kirsch from Freiburg also enriched our lecturers team. More than 50 singers convened into the world music choir project of Lygia Campos. The drumming night under the stars is already a tradition we became fond of. For some of us it is a clandestine highlight: the beating of drums enlightened by torches at the drum parade through the centre of Freiburg. It is a bold and sounding procession under the guidance of Rico and Bill.

This years topic „Rituals“ was the guiding idea of the concerts: During the Moroccan Night some Aissaoua musicians from Marrakesch gave us a fascinating insight into the musical rituals of Sufi fraternities, accompanied by Bendir sounds and an almost ear-battering shawm. The evening of ritual music from Iran, Morocco and the Turkey, Sufi Souls, impressed not only because of the red dressed Derwish dancer Talip Elmasulu.

Also very impressive was the interaction of the diverse Sufi traditions, performed as a great and common celebration of a reunion trough music. The public was very grateful in a sold out E-Werk. It was not by chance that the following evening was guided by the frame drum Daf, for it plays an important role in the Persian Sufi music. Mohsen Taherzadeh once again showed his masterly musicianship, in fact this time with the emphasis on contemplation.

On the same evening, the frame drum guru Glen Velez with his solo concert „Meditations for Frame Drums“ gave an intimate insight into his longlasting relatedness with the frame drum.

Glen The highlight of the festivals topic „Rituals“ was the homonymous concert at the end of the festival week. The list of the frame drummers participating was long: Nora Thiele, Yshai Afterman, Ganesh Kumar, Glen Velez, this years artist in residence Paolo Rosetti, Juhong Kim – just to name a few. The singers Loire and Lygia Campos joined them and we experienced a Korean shaman prayer, a ritual workers song, from Brazil, Capoeira, an Indian ritual dedicated to the Elephant God Ganesh, an Iranian funeral song as well as aspects of a ritual washing. Borders are crossed in a fluent way, one rhythm joins the other and musicians from very different cultures follow together the pulse of the drums- all this turns the Tamburi Mundi concerts ever since into a very special experience. At the beginning of the concert, the public was invited to switch their mobile phones on- and not off- and later on it was the public that should take a bow- instead of the artists. Off course, this made them laugh. These little jokes were in order to illustrate that even a concert evening follows a lot of steady rituals, explains Murat Coşkun.

Again it is amazing that all these Tamburi Mundi concert programs did not exist before- and most likely never will be performed again in this way. „I am talking with the artists before“, explains the festivals director Murat Coşkun, „I tell them about my ideas and all together we advance them. By this means, the musicians engage in an open process. Therefore our encounter here is always very intense.“ So it is not amazing that the rehearsal plan during the festival week is closely spaced and some duo or trio had to rehearse in the basement rooms.

In the basement there also rehearsed the offspring percussion of the festival: bundesbeat, the percussion ensemble of the Bund. Together with their director Johannes Fischer they worked on a program, that a few days later lifted the public from their seats. Modern and challenging beats like Drumming from Steve Reich is shown, but also traditional Korean, Persian and Italian rhythms, performed in a very concentrated way by the offspring drummers, together with the Tamburi Mundi masters Juhong Kim, Mohsen Taherzadeh and Paolo Rossetti. What a prosperous view beyond the horizon!

Also outside the concert rooms people worked, improvised and experimented a lot. Frame drum courses (Riq, Tamburello, Tammorra, Bodhran, Kanjira, Adufe, Daf) for every level with cajon and chants took place- some made their choice because of the teacher, others because of the instrument. In the morning as well as in the afternoon, the courses were well attended with participants coming from all over the world.

Great curiosity and joy of playing unified them. All this forms part of this versatile frame drum family and constitutes this very special and contagious Tamburi- Mundi atmosphere. Between the courses little groups begin to make music, spontaneous sessions take place or there is even plotted a performance for the Tamburi Mundi surprise concert. One year ago on this occasion, the percussion group Radio „Casa São Paio“ had formed. This year they already gave an acclaimed performance on stage and meanwhile produced their first CD!

In the room of the Tamburi Mundi instruments fair there were always a lot of people: New drums were peered, innovations were presented, tested, compared and discussed. This year, eight international instrument makers exhibited their instruments. A unique opportunity to calmly test and to compare handmade master instruments.

Who wants to learn more about Tamburi Mundi finds here on our Website more reports, pictures and films to poke around...

And for those who'd like to participate in this extraordinary frame drum festival: Next year, on the occasion of our 10th anniversary, we will acclaim the Celebration Edition in Freiburg im Breisgau from the 1st - 9th August 2015!

Uli Kudla