Dance, and Spiritual Journey in Georgia & Armenia
September 25 – October 7, 2018
Yuval Ron and Members of His Ensemble
Photographs with Commentary by Debra Jan Bibel
Yuval Ron, I am glad to say, is a friend. He is a composer of modern music for film, television, dance, documentaries, and healing; an oud musician and director of an ensemble that focuses on music of the Middle East; and foremost a peacemaker who applies music to bring people of different, often antagonistic religions together in common effort. I was a member of the touring group who accompanied him and fellow musicians. I participated because of a lifelong passion with music, be it classical of all periods, jazz, psychedelic rock, blues, and especially world (both traditional and popular). My broad amateur ethnomusicological studies have spanned Central and East Asian, African, Native American, and east Mediterranean and Levant cultures and focused on music as a spiritual vehicle within the main traditional religions, chiefly Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sufism of Islam. Georgia and Armenia are the most ancient and continuing centers of early Christianity, going back to to 1 B.C.E. and for Armenia, the first state Christian nation since 301 B.C.E. Even when conquered by the Ottoman Empire, the people were steadfast in their religion. As the map below indicates, these two Orthodox Christian lands are surrounded by Muslim countries, including those of the Russian federation. Of a family of Jewish Kohens and, until recently, a long line of rabbis, I am a scholar, scientist, and also mystic, indeed, a practicing Korean Zen Buddhist. Already well familiar with the various musical styles of these two countries from recordings and concerts, I traveled once again with Yuval Ron to gain some experience in the less familiar Eastern Orthodox Christian styles of spirituality, examine its architecture and art, hear the traditional music in the lands of their origins, and discover the unique dances of these two peoples.
Organization and Viewing / Copying/ Saving/ Sending/ Printing
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Thursday, September 27 [Tblisi-2]
Yuval Ron, oud & musical direction
Tour Director, Facilitator, and Agency:
Anahit Manukyan, Director
Apricot Tours, Glendale, California