Feel the Beat at the Asheville Percussion Festival


Feel the Beat at the Asheville Percussion Festival

  • Ali McGhee

    Ali McGhee is a journalist, creative writer, and academic. Her work has appeared in The Edgar Allan Poe Review, Romantic Circles, Symbiosis: A Journal of Anglo-American Literary...

Source: Asheville Percussion Festival

The Asheville Percussion Festival, now in its sixth year, will take place from June 26 to July 2. Most events will happen at Odyssey Community School, with an additional performance at Diana Wortham Theatre on Saturday, July 1. Internationally-renowned musicians will perform and lead workshops at the festival, joining together under year's theme, "Mosaic of Rhythm." The schedule also includes intensive and beginner workshops and a guided sound meditation.

15 artists will head to Asheville for this year's festival. According to the press release, the lineup of teachers and performers includes Omar Faruk Tekbilek, one of the world’s foremost exponents of Middle Eastern music, Afro-Brazilian musician Marcus Santos, percussionist Naghmeh Farahmand (Iran), and Yousif Sheronick, who the New York Times described as "wizardry on a range of humble frame drums." Sheronick will perform with his wife, violist Kathryn Lockwood. 

Also on the schedule are South Korean kathak dancer, tabla player, and educator Jin Won, multi-percussionist David Kuckhermann, kalimba player Keven Spears, and festival co-creator and composer Adam Maalouf. Some locals are on the lineup as well, including percussionist and teacher Jessie Lehmann and festival organizer River Guerguerian, "Asheville's Ambassador to Rhythm." Members of Free Planet Radio Chris Rosser and Grammy winner Eliot Wadopian will also be in attendance.Source: Asheville Percussion Festival

The festival opens with weeklong intensive programs for beginner (Emerging) and advanced (Immediate) drummers, but the kick-off party and the weekend's festivities really begin on Friday, June 30, at 6 p.m. On Saturday, July 1, all workshops are free and open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with a lunchtime break that includes a free concert. That night, the guest teachers and organizers will perform a Masters Concert at Diana Wortham. Other evening events throughout the weekend include dinner and musical performances and collaborations sponsored by area restaurants, a silent auction, demos, a food truck, and ice cream. The fesitval closes on Sunday morning with a sound meditation. 


Check out Adam Maalouf's piece from the 2015 festival:

For more information and tickets, go to ashevillerhythm.org