The Royal Albert Hall will welcome an impressive array of performers from the Caspian country and beyond at the launch of a five month celebration of the arts and culture of Azerbaijan – a land where ancient traditions are inspiring an exciting future.
From the mysterious magic of mugham, the country’s evocative and emotional national song, to the cutting edge contemporary jazz of Montreux prize-winner Isfar Sarabski, there’s plenty of thrilling new music to explore.
It’s an event which breaks down barriers – apart from Sarabski’s intriguing blend of traditional music from the East and the jazz traditions of the West, works like Farkhad Badalbeyli’s setting of the Ave Maria, blending Latin and Azeri texts, reflect how much different cultures share as well as how they differ.
With performers including popular soprano Joan Rodgers CBE, conductor Tim Henty, adventurous tenor Jeffrey Lloyd-Roberts, virtuoso violinist Shlomo Mintz and Turkish soprano Burçin Savigne, there is an international array of talent joining the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra.
Azerbaijan is well represented too, with a specially assembled trio performing examples of the vast mugham tradition – music that matches the Western classical tradition in its sophistication – and a performance from pianist Murad Huseynov, this gala opening is guaranteed to launch the Buta Festival in fine style. (Royal Festival Hall).