Tapestry of Cultures - A Celebration of Irvine at the Barclay
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The last date listed for Tapestry of Cultures was Saturday October 7, 2006 / 8:00pm.
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- GolSanam Dance – traditional Persian dance
- Siamak Pouian – master tonbak player
- Shalom Women’s Choire – traditional Korean songs
- Myung Sook Joo Studio – Korean Fan Dance
- UCI Etude Ensemble – “Songs of the Disinherited” [modern dance]
- Arpana Dance Company - traditional Asian Indian dance
- California Promise Quartet – traditional barbershop quartet
- Y-Cheng Zhang – bamboo flute and Chinese folk dance
- Chinese Dragon and Lion Dance
- De-You Mao & Evelyn Lin – Chinese King of the Masks
- Wushu Martial Arts
Various communities from Irvine are coming together to commemorate the cities 35th anniversary with Tapestry of Cultures, a virtual tapestry of performances representing the rich cultural heritage that is Irvine. The concert will be held at Irvine Barclay Theatre, and will feature professional artistry from around the world.
Douglas C. Rankin, president of Irvine Barclay Theatre remarked: “Representatives of Irvine’s arts communities have come together and created a completely entertaining evening with an amazing variety of talent that represents a wide range of cultures. Each of the presenting organizations has found sponsorship to underwrite the artistic costs of presenting these professional artists in order to keep the ticket costs low, so that the public can enjoy the celebration.”
The roster of artists includes: Jacque Nunez: Native American song and dance, representing the Acjachemen, To’hono’Odam and Seminole Nations; renowned Persian _tonbak _(drum) player Siamak Pouian; traditional Korean dance and the Shalom Women’s Choir, performing traditional Korean songs; modern dance interpreting the African-American experience performed by the UCI Etude Ensemble; traditional Indian dance featuring Arpana Dance Company; a Chinese variety segment including Chinese bamboo flute, folk dance, martial arts, and the unusual art of face mask changing.
GolSanam Dance begins the performance with a dance dedicated to the great Persian king Cyrus the Great (590-529 BC). The Cylinder of Cyrus the Great (found in the late 19th century) is widely referred to in modern times as the ‘first charter of Human Rights” for its decrees for religious tolerance and the abolition of slavery. Performing Iranian music is Siamak Pouian, a highly acclaimed Persian _tonbak _(drum) player, who is best known for his ability to improvise. Pouian has performed at many highly acclaimed events throughout the world such as the Warner Brothers 75th anniversary ceremony, and has accompanied many prominent Persian vocalists and instrumentalists. For the past nine years he has been a music professor at University of California in Santa Barbara. A pioneer in his field, Pouian continues to inspire audiences with his explosive repertoire.
The Korean-American Federation of Orange County will present The Shalom Women’s Choir, performing traditional Korean songs with Sei-Hei Solo Drum Dance and the Myung Suk Joo Fan Dance.
UCI Etude Ensemble’s Songs of the Disinherited, choreographed by dance legend Donald McKayle, traces, in song and dance, scenes from the black Diaspora in the New World. Songs of the Disinherited is composed of four segments, _I’m on my Way and Upon the Mountain,_ performed to traditional music; Angelitos Negros performed to music by Manuel Alvarez Maciste with vocals by Roberta Flack; and Shaker Life, performed to music by Richie Havens. First choreographed in 1972 for the Inner City Repertory Dance Company of Los Angeles, the work has since entered the repertories of the Lula Washington Dance Theatre, and the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble.
Donald McKayle’s distinguished career began in 1948 and has spanned choreography, direction, writing, education, and performance in dance, theater, film, recordings, and television. He has choreographed over fifty works for companies in the United States, Canada, Europe, and South America. Some of McKayle’s now classic choreographic works; Games, Rainbow ’Round My Shoulder, District Storyville, and Songs of the Disinherited, were first performed by Donald McKayle and Company in New York, and after he relocated to California, by the Inner City Repertory Dance Company of Los Angeles. Under Mr. McKayle’s artistic directorship, some of these pieces are being performed anew by dance companies around the United States as part of the American Dance Festival’s prestigious program, “The Black Tradition in American Modern Dance.” Mr. McKayle’s choreography and direction for Broadway musical theater, television, and films have been honored by five Tony nominations, an Outer Critics Circle Award, the NAACP Image Award, an Emmy nomination, a Los Angeles Drama Logue Award, and a Golden Eagle award. Currently, Donald McKayle is currently on the UCI faculty and serves as Artistic Director of UCI Dance, as well as teaching advanced modern technique and choreography.
Southern California-based Arpana Dance Company (ADC) has had the honor of performing in the US, Europe and India under the guidance of Ramya Harishankar. Ramya Harishankar combines the elegance, grace and suppleness of the Vazhavoor School with the distinctive ability to express all shades of emotion with sensitivity and intuition. She has imbibed these qualities under legendary gurus: the late Swamimalai K. Rajaratnam and Padma Bhushan Kalanidhi Narayanan. Her solo performance career, spanning nearly three decades, has taken her all over the world. In 1982, Ramya established Arpana, which has grown to become a premier school of Bharata Natyam in California. The Arpana Dance Company (ADC), made up of the graduates of the school, has over 15 full-length productions to its credit and has explored many cross-cultural themes while raising over $70000 towards children’s charities. As the founding/board member of the Ektaa Center, an arts and cultural center in Irvine, Ramya has contributed significantly to enriching the cultural landscape of Southern California.
The Chinese performance is a 20-minute dynamic, musical program that integrates Chinese Bamboo Flute, Chinese Folk Dancing, Chinese Dragon & Lion Dancing, Chinese Face Mask Changing, and Chinese Martial Arts together with the major theme of “Joyful Celebration” to celebrate City of Irvine’s 35th anniversary. This presentation will include the renowned bamboo flute virtuoso Yi Cheng Zhang, and King of the Masks, De You Mao & Evelyn Lin, and many talented National Wushu (martial arts) Training Center’s masters who will perform an array of aerial movements, empty hand and weaponry, group routines, and combative fighting sets.
Jacque Nunez has made a successful career out of sharing her Acjachemen ancestor’s story. She prides herself on preserving and passing her culture along through the oral Native American tradition of story-telling. She has shared her stories at Disneyland, Los Angeles and Anaheim Convention Centers, hundreds of schools, libraries, non-profit entities and also at several Southern California city events. Jacque has performed the National Anthem at both the unveiling of new United States Postal Stamps and the Angel’s Stadium. While she continues storytelling at schools and large venues, she recently taped and performed an original story on PBS’s Children’s Television Show. While creating her original story for PBS she was inspired to create a new series of children’s books.