Anoushka Shankar, Diego El Cigala, Jorge Drexler and More Set for World Music Institute's 2013-14 Season

Anoushka Shankar, Diego El Cigala, Jorge Drexler and More Set for World Music Institute's 2013-14 Season

The World Music Institute announces its 29th season with an incredibly diverse array of artists spread over 4 concert series and 3 weekend festivals.

Offering its signature breadth and depth of world music and dance talent, WMI hosts international star names such as Anoushka Shankar, Diego El Cigala, Jorge Drexler, Angelique Kidjo, Zakir Hussain, and Farruquito, as well as fascinating lesser-known artists in uniquely accessible and authentic world music experiences.

WMI's Global Salon series returns for its second year. Hosted at the Thalia theater at Symphony Space, the highly intimate setting allows artists to informally share cultural history and personal stories alongside their music.

The wildly hip and successful World To Brooklyn series also returns. Located in the heart of Brooklyn at Roulette, it offers immersive cultural evenings that feature free "cultural" cocktails, dance lessons, and great world music followed by a DJ after-party, all for $25.

Among the weekend festivals are the dynamic two-part Flamenco Gitano, featuring Spanish singer Diego El Cigala as well as celebrated dancer Farruquito's first NY appearance in more than a decade; and year two of Africa Now at the Apollo Theater, which showcases today's African music scene.

With music and dance originating from Africa, India, Latin America, Spain, Eastern Europe and drawing from the roots of jazz, classical Indian, gypsy, afro-pop, singer-songwriter, electronica, salsa, and flamenco music, WMI's 2013-14 season is a richly curated tribute to global artistic achievement.

Artistic Director Karen Sander talks about her vision of WMI:

"We live in a global society, and world music has become increasingly available and popular. At the World Music Institute, we reveal these dynamic cultures through more than just performances, always seeking deeper ways to engage with our artists-whether a rare find or an international star.

Our goal is to truly crack open these cultures for people by adding innovative platforms to make world music come alive. Our new Global Salon and World to Brooklyn series, as well as our weekend festivals full of lectures, demonstrations, personal stories, and artist accessibility, I think, achieve just that. With exciting partnerships this year throughout the city with the Apollo Theater, Town Hall, Madison Square Garden and Roulette, we're writing the next chapter of world music."

T H E ' 1 3 / 1 4 S E A S O N


This three-part series presents an eclectic mix of programs from around the world, at a variety of top venues around the city. This year showcases three one-of-a-kind voices: Christine Salem at Symphony Space, Jorge Drexler at Society for Ethical Culture, and Angélique Kidjo at Town Hall. Each of these visionary artists offers a highly artistic way of looking at tradition, and then moves their tradition forward, to the next place.

Christine Salem / Jorge Drexler / Angélique Kidjo


Friday, October 4, 8:00pm
Peter Norton Symphony Space
2537 Broadway at 95th Street
$35 Public • $30 WMI Friends • $5 Bring a Kid!

The World Music Institute is thrilled to launch its 2013-14 season with Christine Salem from Réunion Island in the Indian Ocean. This year Jon Pareles of The New York Times chose Salem as his standout performance of Globalfest, noting her "potent, indefatigable contralto." Christine Salem is the greatest living champion of maloya, a nearly-extinct musical tradition rooted in the work songs and chants of the island's African slaves. The hypnotic, percussion-driven music is based on rhythms played during ceremonies dedicated to ancestors and is layered with rousing call-and-response vocals. A force of nature on stage, Salem delivers socially-conscious lyrics in Creole, Malagasy, Comorian and Swahili, while shaking out the tempo on a traditional rectangular reed rattle, the kayamn. A channel to another time and place, she seems to fall into a trance while inducing the audience to do the same.


Tuesday, October 8, 8:00pm
Concert Hall at The Society for Ethical Culture
2 West 64th Street
$45-$55 Public • $40-$50 WMI Friends

The Madrid-based Uruguayan doctor-turned-musician Jorge Drexler is one of Latin America's most beloved singer/songwriters. A musical visionary with a gentle voice and seductive, understated stage presence, he is known for his sophisticated arrangements and evocative lyrics which tackle complex, timely themes: nationality, loneliness, language, history, technology, and of course, love. Drexler achieved worldwide fame with his Oscar-winning song "Al otro lado del río" from The Motorcycle Diaries, and hasn't slowed down since-amassing awards and nominations, film scores and film roles along the way. Ever the innovator, Drexler presents "World Abyss," a new show that promises high levels of improvisation and interaction, including a demonstration of his new n app, where smartphone users "collaborate" in the song-making process.


Saturday, February 15, 8:00pm
The Town Hall
123 W 43rd Street
$35-$55 Public • $30-$50 WMI Friends
Co-presented with Town Hall

Named "Africa's premier diva" by Time Magazine, the Beninese singer Angélique Kidjo is the continent's most internationally celebrated female artists. She is known for her uplifting and dynamic music, a blend of tribal and pop rhythms of her West African heritage with zouk, rumba, jazz, and Latin, sung in English, French, Fon and Yorùbá. An agent of inspiration and change, Kidjo is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and a tireless champion for women's health and girls' education in Africa. She's been listed as one of Africa's 50 most iconic figures (BBC), and one of the Top 100 Most Inspiring Women in the World (The Guardian). The prolific Kidjo already has twelve acclaimed albums to her name; this concert at Town Hall marks the NY stop of her new album release tour and her World Music Institute debut.


The Masters of Indian Music series continues the World Music Institute's long tradition of presenting the finest in Indian classical music, both Hindustani (North India) and Carnatic (South India). WMI has been the leading presenter of Indian artists since its founding in 1985; its very first concert featured some of India's most celebrated classical artists, including Lalgudi Jayraman, Maharajapuram Santhanam, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Shivkumar Sharma, and Zakir Hussain. New Director Karen Sander is committed to continuing this legacy.

Anoushka Shankar / Ustad Imrat Khan / Zakir Hussain


Saturday, November 16, 8:00pm
NYU Skirball Center
566 LaGuardia Pl. at Washington Sq. South
$40-$45 Public • $30-$35 WMI Friends • $5 Bring a Kid! • $150 VIP Reception

Daughter and disciple of the legendary Ravi Shankar, sitarist and composerAnoushka Shankar has emerged as one of the leading figures in world music today. She studied exclusively with her father since age nine and by twenty, had already made three records and performed at prestigious venues internationally. Thriving as a composer, Anoushka explores where her deep roots in Indian classical music cross over into other genres including flamenco, electronica, and jazz. This concert marks Anoushka's WMI debut, her first New York appearance since her father died, and the release of her seventh album, "Traces of You," which pays tribute to her father and to the relationships that have left an indelible mark on her life.


Saturday, February 8, 8:00pm
Peter Norton Symphony Space
2537 Broadway at 95th Street
$30 Public • $25 WMI Friends • $5 Bring a Kid!

Guardian of the great heritage of a centuries-old musical dynasty, Ustad Imrat Khan is considered a living legend of Indian classical music. At 78, he is the senior-most member of the Etawah Gharana, a line of master musicians dating back to the Mogul courts. Maestro of the sitar and surbahar (a bass version of the sitar developed by his great-grandfather), he is a consummate musician who has made the melodic subtleties of raag and the rhythmic intricacies of taal accessible to audiences around the world. He will be performing on sitar, accompanied by the illustrious Pandit Anindo Chatterjee on tabla.


Saturday, March 29, 8:00pm
The Theater at Madison Square Garden
7th Avenue, between 31st and 33rd Street
$45-$125 Public • $40-$120 WMI Friends • $300/$500 VIP Reception

The preeminent classical tabla virtuoso of our time, and a longtime favorite of the World Music Institute, the legendary Zakir Hussain returns to NYC with hisMasters of Percussion ensemble, in an exciting new venue-Madison Square Garden Theater. Hussain's consistently brilliant performances have established him as a national treasure in his native India, and musical phenomenon worldwide. Renowned for his mesmerizing improvisations, dazzling technique, and beguiling wit, he has been touring internationally for decades, showcasing premier percussionists in unforgettable ensemble configurations. He will be joined by V Selvaganesh, kanjira and ghatham (clay pot); Steve Smith, drums; Niladri Kumar, sitar; Dilshad Khan, sarangi; Vijay S Chavan, dholki; Deepak Bhatt,dhol. Special guests TBA.


World to Brooklyn is the World Music Institute's vibrant new dance-party series that takes place in the cultural hub of downtown Brooklyn. Offering a socially immersive way to enjoy a culture's music, World to Brooklyn replicates a dance-party in a specific country-one can eat, drink, listen and dance to the culture-and attracts a remarkably friendly, all-inclusive cross-cultural mix. Utilizing the unique flexibility of Roulette's space (seats are removed downstairs to create a dance floor, while the upstairs has fixed seating for those who prefer to lounge), the series offers pre-performance dance lessons, after-parties featuring DJ's connected to the culture presented, culturally specific cocktails, meet-and-greets and art exhibits.

7:00pm - Doors Open
7:00-8:00pm - Open Bar with specialty cocktails from the culture
7:30pm - Dance Lesson with a teacher from the culture
8pm - Live Show with visual projections
9:30pm - DJ After-Party

Romano Drom / La Cumbiamba Eneye / La Clava Secreta


Saturday, February 22, 8:00pm
509 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn
$25 Public • $20 WMI Friends

Playing household items-pots, cans and spoons-alongside modern instruments such as guitar, bass and drums, Romano Drom ("Gypsy Road") exudes the soul and passion of the Roma people. They are one of Hungary's top Gypsy bands, and they sing in the original Olah Gypsy language. With profound emotion and energy, Romano Drom plays both centuries-old melodies and modern concoctions infused with Catalan rumba, Arab, Balkan and pop.