Tonight, Saturday July 21st, is an exciting Tango event benefiting Ashkenaz Music and Dance Community Center.
Ashkenaz, in Berkeley is a very fun events venue presenting awesome concerts, music and dance workshops rooted in traditional cultures from around the world. Ashkenaz supports local and international bands of both established and emerging artists in a “respectful, comfortable, safe, and family atmosphere”. This venue was established in 1973 by David Nadel, a dedicated human rights activist and folkdancer. Ashkenaz has been a nonprofit since 1997.
Personally, I’m a big fan of this place, due to it’s friendly, casual atmosphere, good food and drinks, large wood dance floor and incredible live music. Let’s all support this venue so that everyone can enjoy these wonderful events.
Why is this event so great?
There will not only be a live Tango orchestra, Redwood Tango Trio, but also the amazing harmonica player, Joe Powers, performing and singing with them. Plus Tango performances by Nicolas Tapia & Amar Singh and Mirabai Deranja & Michael Kass.
About Joe Powers:
International harmonica phenomenon, Joe Powers is taking his instrument to new heights with his engaging and energetic performances that cover a full spectrum of musical genres from Jazz, Blues, and Pop-Rock, to Classical, New Age, Argentine Tango, traditional Japanese music, and other world traditions. The only tango harmonica phenomenon in the USA, Joe honed his tango skills while living in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he recorded his 2007 debut solo album, “Amor de Tango”. He has shared the stage with top Tango artists: NarcoTango, ColorTango, and “Gotan Project” singer, Veronika Silva, and performed with groups as diverse as Pink Martini, British Pop Icon Jamie Cullum, and Smooth Jazz Pioneer Tom Grant. Last December he was guest soloist with the Ichikawa Symphony for that Japanese orchestra’s 60th anniversary concert, and this summer is busy touring from the Oregon Bach Festival to Ashkenaz, and on to European events. He is also a singer, and will sing on a couple of the great tangos at Ashkenaz.
Is that impressive enough for you? I heard him play last night at “El Abrazo” in San Francisco, and he truly is amazing. Super nice guy too!
Redwood Tango Ensemble is a young Bay Area quintet dedicated to playing traditional and original tango music. The group plays transcriptions and adaptations of the classic orchestras led by Francisco Canaro, Juan D’Arienzo, Osvaldo Pugliese, Anibal Troilo, Julian Plaza and others, as well as original compositions and nuevo tango from around the world. The group’s new CD, “Joaquin,” includes music they are currently playing in concert. Tonight’s “trio” features bandoneon player and saxophonist Charles Gorczynski, pianist Holly Mead and bass player Daniel Fabricant.
About Nicolas Tapia & Amar Singh:
Nicholas Tapia and Amar Singh are fabulous new dancers/teachers here in the Bay Area. They received most of their tango training in Buenos Aires and their elegant style is a delight to watch. They placed 3rd at the 2012 USA Tango Championships Salon Category.
About Mirabai Deranja & Michael Kass:
Mirabai is a very talented dancer in many genres. She has danced professionally in Jazz, Swing, Blues, Salsa, and also studied Tango intensively in Buenos Aires for 5 years. She now tours the world teaching tango. Together with Michael Kass she won 2nd place in the 2012 USA Argentine Tango Championship Stage Category. Their “Stage” performances are filled with jaw-dropping moves beautifully executed.
This benefit is organized, by one of Bay Areas prominent Tango instructors: Sonja Riket. She has been the resident Tango instructor at Ashkenaz since 2008. She was recently awarded 7×7 Magazine “Best Tango Teacher” Award. Sonja is a somatic movement therapist, and teaches dance and somatic movement classes and organizes fundraising events around critical issues of our time.
When: Saturday, July 21, 2012
8:00pm to 1:00am (Arrive early to get a table)
Cost: $18 at the door
Location: Ashkenaz Music and Dance Community Center
1317 San Pablo Avenue at Gillman, Berkeley, CA Map