International music festival showcases ASU faculty, students, alumni

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Music faculty Christopher Creviston, Hannah Creviston and Jiji Kim selected works by Irish composers that they were interested in performing, and dance faculty were asked if they could choreograph to the selected music.

Dance faculty who choreographed works include Carley Conder, Mary Fitzgerald, Jorge Magana (House), David Olarte, Eileen Standley and Keith Thompson.

“What interested me most was the chance to intersect my movement language (contemporary dance) with this rich traditional Irish heritage,” Conder said. “This music lends itself to dancing – you can’t help but dance when you hear the traditional Irish music.” 

Conder said she and her third-year students dove into the complexities, history and structures of the traditional Irish music, in particular an unaccompanied, vocal selection in Gaelic that they translated to better understand the meaning.

“I hope the ASU students learn that there are sparks that fly when mixing the old and new, traditional and contemporary,” Conder said. “Also, that limitations often open doors that would normally be closed. COVID provided a collaboration between the deserts of Arizona and green rolling hills of Ireland. I’m grateful for that.”  

Hu said that having the festival filmed and online this year has allowed them to incorporate more people and present more artists internationally. The opening concert was filmed in Singapore, Munich and Nova Scotia; Friday night’s concert was filmed in Derry; Thursday night’s concert was filmed at the National Sawdust Festival in Brooklyn; and the closing concert was mostly filmed in Phoenix. There is also a four-composer panel workshop with young composers on March 27 featuring two music composition faculty – Fernanda Navarro and Christopher Norby.

The virtual gala concert is available at 1 p.m. Arizona time on March 28 on the Walled City Music Festival YouTube channel and website. More event information

The festival runs through March 28 and all concerts and events are online.

2021 Closing Gala Concert program, in order of appearance:

Greg Caffrey, composer: “Honk,” performed by Christopher Creviston (soprano saxophone) and Hannah Creviston (piano), choreography and dance by David Olarte.

Linda Buckley, composer: “Sólás,” poetry by Doireann Ní Ghríofra, performed by Cathal Breslin (piano) and Sabrina Hu (flute), contemporary modern dance choreographed by Keith Thompson, dancers Kayla Anderson and Brayden Guentzel.

Jonathan Nangle, composer: “Solas,” performed by Jiji Kim (electric guitar), Afro-Latin salsa choreography and dance by David Olarte and Carla Leon.

Christopher Norby, composer: “Moviola Music,” performed by Cathal Breslin (piano) and Sabrina Hu (flute).

Daniel Roumain, composer: “Seven Simple Solos,” performed by Daniel Bernard Roumain (violin), postmodern dance choreographed by Mary Fitzgerald and Eileen Standley.

Buí (performed and recorded in Cultúrlann, Derry) with contemporary modern dance choreographed by Carley Conder, dancers Lauren Jimenez, Emily Laird, Amy Symonds and Victoria Ward.

Buí (performed and recorded in Cultúrlann, Derry), music remix by Lawrence “Reflekshin” Martinez with hip hop choreography by Jorge Magana (House), dancers Dominique “Domo” Brown, Mike “Mr. Groove” Cruz and Ruby Morales.

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