Since 2000, the Silk Road Ensemble has been redefining classical music for 21st-century audiences. The group has been called "vibrant and virtuosic" by the Wall Street Journal; "one of the 21st century's great ensembles" by the Vancouver Sun, and a "roving musical laboratory without walls" by The Boston Globe. Silk Road Ensemble's performers and composers hail from more than 20 countries. Passionate about learning from one another's traditions, these rooted explorers perform on instruments ranging from world percussion to Western strings, as well as the Chinese pipa (lute) and sheng (mouth organ), the Japanese shakuhachi (bamboo flute), the Galician gaita (bagpipe), and Indian tabla (paired drums), among others. In engaging, high-energy performances, the Silk Road Ensemble draws on a rich tapestry of traditions that make up our shared cultural heritage, creating a new musical language-an accessible encounter between the foreign and the familiar that reflects our many-layered contemporary identities.
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