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January 16 Saturday at 8pm
Kaila Flexer & Gari Hegedus
- (Tes-LEEM) means both ‘commit’ and ‘surrender’ in Turkish and features two well known Bay Area musicians: violinist Kaila Flexer and Gari Hegedus on oud, Turkish saz, Greek lauoto and other (mostly plucked) stringed instruments. This potent duo performs Greek, Turkish and Sephardic music. In addition, both Flexer and Hegedus are composers whose original music is based on these fertile traditions. Both seasoned performers and recording artists, Teslim released its debut (self-titled) CD in December 2008. This unusual duo is at home in classical, early music, and folk music venues and holds workshops on a variety of topics.
- Kaila Flexer -Violin -
Kaila Flexer is a violinist, composer and music educator. In addition to performing and recording with Teslim, Flexer also performs with Persian vocalist Hamed Nikpay. Flexer founded and produced Klezmer Mania!, a much-loved annual Bay Area event for over 10 years (1989-2002). She has been at the helm of bands such as Third Ear, Next Village and Kaila Flexer’s Fieldharmonik, ensembles that feature her original material. As a composer, her work reflects her deep respect for folk music as well as her ability to forge new musical landscapes fertilized by traditional music. She has performed both nationally internationally with her own ensembles as well as with groups including The Hollis Taylor-Kaila Flexer Duo, The Flexer-Marshall Duo, Club Foot Orchestra and KITKA Women’s Vocal Ensemble. In addition to the new Teslim release, Kaila has recorded two CD’s of original music for Compass Records (Nashville) to critical acclaim.
- Gari Hegedus -Oud, saz, laouto, violin, viola-
Gari Hegedus plays violin and viola and variety of stringed instruments from Greece and Turkey including lauoto, oud, saz and hand drums. In addition to playing in the duo Teslim with violinist Kaila Flexer, he performs with world music group Stellamara and Persian vocalist Hamed Nikpay. He has studied with oud master Naseer Shamma and has recorded and performed with Ross Daly. He has toured with the Mevlevi Dervish (Sufi) Order of America and continues to participate in Turkish ceremonial and devotional gatherings around the country.
- What the press is saying about Teslim
“Far more than the sum of its parts, “Teslim” features a remarkable multi-instrumental duo that weaves an exquisite aural tapestry from strands of Balkan, Middle and Near Eastern styles, with a repertoire of original compositions and arrangements based mostly on traditional modes and melodies. Rather than trading on exoticism, violin master Kaila Flexer, best known as a leading West Coast proponent of the klezmer revival, and Gari Hegedus, who plays a dazzling menagerie of string instruments, have created an enthralling body of deeply personal music. This is a singular CD by an utterly original pair of players.”
–Andrew Gilbert, San Jose Mercury News
“Teslim is the realization of a musical awakening for the inspired artistry of Gari Hegedus and Kaila Flexer. Imagine musical siblings separated at birth, and by luck and magic reunite in each other’s inner voice. The twin stringed chemistry and virtuosic interplay is extraordinary as Kaila and Gari forge a fresh musical idiom inspired by the cross-pollinating currents of Turkish, Sephardic and Cretan/Greek music.”
–Dore Stein, Tangents Radio, KALW
“Kaila Flexer and Gari Hegedus have created a CD of wonderfully rich, soulful, and engaging music, drawing from their great musical rapport and obvious shared affection for musical forms originating in the Near East and Asia Minor.”
–Bob Campbell, Folk Music & Beyond KALW, San Francisco
“The feeling of returning home, both personally and musically, powers this terrific CD. Flexer and Hegedus are creators of new music based on a profound love of traditional Greek, Turkish, Arabic, Jewish, and Balkan musics. Kaila’s fiddle playing is, as ever, supremely subtle and satisfying, and she has a strong kindred spirit in Hegedus.”
–Hollis Taylor, Reviewer for Fiddler Magazi