EastEast Picnic will be the closing event of the Mawaheb music festival in St. Petersburg on June 6th. The program includes daytime concerts by artists from West Asia and North Africa and an educational segment at a lecture hall in New Holland. Pre-registration is required to attend, and an online broadcast of the entire event will be available on the website of the partner organization QRMedia.
The program of lectures, discussions, workshops, and screenings of documentaries was prepared by EastEast curators–musical ethnographers Ben Wheeler (Mountains of Tongues) and Bulat Khalilov (Ored Recordings).
The first panel discussion will be moderated by Faisal bin Ibrahim al-Tamimi, cultural advisor and researcher in the field of traditional art in Qatar. He will talk about the music of the region, based on his experience of working with local folklore ensembles as a director and composer of theatrical performances. The lecture will be accompanied by performances of Qatari musicians.
The second discussion will focus on ways to preserve and promote traditional music–from DIY-ethnography and working with archives to new interdisciplinary projects. It will feature FLEE Project, Ored Recordings, and Canary Records.
At the final lecture, Bulat Khalilov, co-founder of the Ored Recordings label, will hold a workshop where he will share his experience of creating audio in the field and arrange an impromptu expedition to record the music of the Syrian Circassians performed by accordionist Alan Sheujen. The event will attract both professionals and anyone interested in methods of working with traditional musical heritage.
After the educational portion of the picnic, screenings of documentaries will take place: Planet Malek by director and DJ Paloma Colombe–about the Algerian musician Ahmed Malek, the author of soundtracks for more than 200 films, including famous films of the Algerian new wave of the 70s and 80s, Oulaya’s Wedding by Hisham Mayet, Cyrus Moussavi, and Brittany Nugent–about wedding musicians who marry their eldest daughter in Dakhla where the Sahara meets the Atlantic, and Gitara from the Mountains of Tongues label–about how the guitar’s unique position within the the culture of Azerbaijan.
Read more on the website.