Baltimore’s art scene encompasses so many amazing genres and niches that just slip through the cracks in other cities. Elsewhere, a museum dedicated to works by outsider artists might be a sort of underground, marginal attraction—here, AVAM is a glass-mosaic jewel in the Charm City’s crown. Likewise, if we’re going to take time out of our day to enjoy and celebrate some virtuosic vocalists, it’s not going to be all Placido Domingo all the time. No. We’d much rather attend EMBODY, a festival of the vocal arts founded by local beatboxer Shodekeh and dedicated to vocal art traditions of Baltimore and the world. EMBODY’s latest offering is scheduled for tomorrow, April 6th at the Creative Alliance.
Saturday’s performance is titled “River,” and blends three of the world’s most subtle, powerful, & intricate vocal disciplines into one collaboration: Tuvan throat singing, classical voice, and beatbox. The evening is spearheaded by the ancient beauty of traditional Tuvan throat singing and music presented by the masterful ensemble Alash, composed of three of the world’s most famous throat singers hailing from the steppes of Tuva, near Mongolia. Joining Alash on this evening will be Kerry Holahan, a soprano classically-trained at Peabody Conservatory, and Shodekeh. If you’ve never seen Shodekeh perform, just know that he’s been dubbed “the human beatbox,” has accompanied the BSO and toured the globe, flooring audiences around the world. We’re pretty sure his skills as a beatboxer must be due to either a supernatural gift or some kind of bionic implant he’s just not talking about. Go see for yourself and let us know which one your money’s on.
EMBODY will take place at 8pm on April 6th at the Creative Alliance. For more information, visit www.creativealliance.org. A Q&A with the performers follows. Tickets are $20, $15 for members & students.
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