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Georgian Folk Singing: A Workshop with Ketevan Mindorashvili

  • First Congregational Church of Oakland (United Church of Christ) 2501 Harrison Street Oakland, CA 94612 United States (map)

Prepare to be uplifted and blown away by the exquisite and unusual harmonies of traditional Georgian vocal music! Always in 3 parts, voices weave in and out in dissonance and independence, creating unexpected chords that shift and meander to cadence in powerful unisons or open fifths. Learn about the history of Georgian music while Ketevan Mindorashvili, director of Georgia's Zedashe Ensemble, teaches you songs from this storied country which is the birthplace of one of the world's oldest and most fascinating polyphonic singing traditions.

About Ketevan Mindorashvili:
Founder and director of the Zedashe Ensemble, Ketevan ("Keto") Mindorashvili was born in the eastern Georgian fortress town of Sighnaghi and raised in a traditional singing family. Keto showed a gift for singing since childhood and continued to study music technique extensively in university. She devoted herself to preserving traditions on the brink of disappearance, and has become known as a singer and a teacher of Georgian folk music and dance, particularly the fluid ornamentation of eastern folk songs. She has a deep knowledge of ancient church chant, and is a master of the panduri, the three-stringed lute from the eastern Georgian region of Kakheti. Keto has searched valleys and mountains for ancient polyphony, collecting folk songs and chants, as well as writing her own music within the tradition. Today she hosts students from all over the world in her native Sighnaghi and travels internationally leading tours of Zedashe and teaching workshops. She has appeared on all Zedashe recordings to date, and has participated in numerous tours to the United States, United Kingdom, and throughout Europe.

This workshop is part of Kitka's "Song Routes in a New Land" Female Folk Song Masters Residencies project, supported, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts and the City of Oakland Cultural Funding Program.