Jan. 23, 2015

Contact: Michele Abba

Cal Poly Arab Music Ensemble to Perform Feb. 21

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Arab Music Ensemble will be joined by nationally renowned guest artists in a performance of diverse music and dance at 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, in Harman Hall in the Performing Arts Center.

The concert, featuring music from the Eastern Mediterranean and larger region, will include some of the most celebrated instrumental, vocal and poetic repertoire from the Ottoman era to the present.

Highlights will be works by artists such as Ismail Haqqi Bey of Turkey, Riyad Al-Sunbati of Egypt, and Fairuz, the Rahbani Brothers, Ziad Rahbani, and Marcel Khalife of Lebanon.

The show will begin with a musical suite featuring classical Ottoman-based genres alternating with instrumental improvisations. Closing the first half of the show will be contrasting upbeat songs culminating in a Turko-Arabic dance. The acts during the second half will range from a duo performance and additional solo improvisations to the full ensemble leading a dabke or Levantine line dance.

Critically acclaimed guest artists will include Egyptian violinist Adel Eskander Guirguis, Assyrian qanun player Ishmael, Lebanese accordionist Elias Lammam, and Syrian percussionist Faisal Zedan.

The Arab Music Ensemble is comprised of Cal Poly students and San Luis Obispo community members. San Luis Obispo dance directors Saundra Sarrouf and Jenna Mitchell will lead their troupe in folkdances. Cal Poly music professor, composer and performer Ken Habib will direct the 35-member Arab Music Ensemble.

Tickets are $12 and $14 for the public and $9 and $12 for senior citizens and students. Pricing includes all Performing Arts Center fees; event parking is sponsored by the PAC. Tickets are sold at the Performing Arts Ticket Office between noon and 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. To order by phone, call SLO-4TIX (756-4849).

A 10 percent discount is given to patrons who buy season tickets to four Music Department events through the Performing Arts Ticket Office; a 15 percent discount is given on tickets to five or more events.

The concert is sponsored by Cal Poly’s College of Liberal Arts, Music Department, and Instructionally Related Activities program. For more information, call the Music Department at 805-756-2406.

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