Sunday, November 25, 2012

Concert: Celia Evans and the Gorno Altaisk folk Ensemble!!!

 We had a rehearsal on the big stage the day before the concert. Not just anyone walks onto the main stage without an appointment. Its pretty busy with student group rehearsals etc. Here we are waiting to go in..... waiting for our time slot. I needed to strangle Elsa for some comment she made , but as you can see she is not really concerned:-)

 The eve of the performance the performers relaxed in the wings in the dark, as I bopped around and took flash pictures to blind everyone.  Willa and Shuralai make a nice picture together.
 Andrey (Andrew) in the foreground was one of our MC's.  He was our English speaker, and a really good one at that!.  Erlan was our Russian speaker but he is from Kurgistan and Russian is his second language. These students amaze me. They did a great job with a script I cooked up.

Its pretty typical in Russia to have an MC to announce in between things.  Often it is a man and a woman, but we had two men and they were naturals!

Alla in the background with her sweet smile, clear direction and willing attitude.  These are really amazing young folks.

A peace sign from Bekjon.  He is from Kurgistan too, and always has a smile and a camera to take pics.  Bekjon gave me some fake Kurgistan money on a key chain to remember him by, and I will.


 Anfisa here is smiling!  She has a great musical ear and can tranpose into other keys, which I can not, and so she was great to play the guitar with us. Note that in the performance pictures, she is a bit more nervous but still beautiful

 We started out with me doing 3 songs solo for a pretty decent audience. It was fun to speak to an audience, some of whom know english to some degree or another and many who dont. But I think the fun and the feeling came though.

 Then the MC's announced the group and we all did two folk songs together, with some harmonies.. Long Black Veil and Stop and Smell the Roses, by Mac Davis.  I love that tune and the message.  The group liked it too.

 My friend Lubov is a Prof. in the Music School at the University and I was priveledged to have her join our group and play guitar along with us. 

One evening she invited me and a few other women to an evening of shared music at her studio at the University and I was treated to the most beautiful flute music.  We traded CD's and now I have Lubov on the flute to take home with me when I go tonight (we are off to the airport tonight to head home over a few days!). Masha, over on the left in the pink dress, is also a Professor of English and gave me the great honor of her friendship and  singing with us at our weekly practices and at the concert.
Lubov is really a piano player first and teaches both instruments.  What an honor to share my music with her and have her like it. 
 I sang a couple more songs solo and then the ensemble joined me to sing' I still believe'.  They flatter me by really liking that song.

My favorite part  was at the end when we sang Adirondack Blue by Roy Hurd with the chorus words on the screen for the audeince to sing along. It was the first song I taught them and one the know by heart now.   I hope the video comes out.  A professional photographer took video of the whole show. I just dont have it yet:-)

 Finally, we sang Golden Mountains, a song I wrote in 2006 when our group of adk women visited last time.  since then many students have learned and sung it and on this eve it was also sung by the audience as well.

I gave a flower to each of the performers and my friend and host Natalia as well.  They gave me the gift of working and singing with them and they, in turn,  got to practice their English in one of the best ways to learn a language - SONG!

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