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  • Lara Spence

Sounds from Different Places and Time - INTERWOVEN Ensemble - shamisen, piri, saenghwang, erhu + Western Instruments - Classical Concert May 11 in Vancouver

Concert May 11 in Vancouver - INTERWOVEN Asian Western String Ensemble

The world-class intercultural music ensemble INTERWOVEN is playing a concert May 11 in Vancouver, presented by local non-profit organization Muzewest.


INTERWOVEN features traditional Asian instruments such as shamisen, piri,

saenghwang, and erhu playing alongside classical Western string instruments (violin,

viola, and cello). Their mission is “to bring together the sounds from different places

and time. The ensemble name derives from the idea that music making is like creating

a tapestry, weaving together with threads that represent and celebrate diverse origins,

traditions and materials.”


INTERWOVEN founder and GRAMMY-winning violinist Keiko Tokunaga was inspired to

create the ensemble in response to the climate of anti-Asian racism that developed at

the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. She said, “Hate comes from the fear of the

unknown; it is our natural instinct as animals to avoid something that seems foreign. On

the other hand, we see plenty of examples of synergy in nature, meaning that entirely

different beings can work together and create something better and stronger. We

believe that combining multiple cultures fortifies our bonds as human beings, and it

helps us create a more inclusive environment.”


INTERWOVEN’s Canadian debut in Vancouver, presented by Muzewest, will include

three Canadian premieres of compositions inspired by Asian folklore.


Muzewest Concerts has been bringing world-class performances by exceptional classical

musicians from all over the globe for 11 years to music lovers across BC's Lower

Mainland and the world at affordable prices.


There will be a pre-concert discussion with one of the commissioned composers, Michael Ippolito, and INTERWOVEN’s co-artistic director, Dr. Sean Wang, on the subject of cultural integration and clash, at the venue.


Muzewest would like to thank the Canada Council for the Arts for making this concert

possible.



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