29 March 2017, 08:18




On occasion of 25th anniversary of Turkmen – American diplomatic relations, musicians of two countries present musical gift

17.03.2017

Turkmen Magtumguly Music and Drama Theatre hold concert organized bu the Ministry of Culture and the Embassy of the USA in Turkmenistan. The State Symphonic Orchestra and three musicians of the Voices of America organization, specially arrived to our country on occasion of the event, performed for Ashgabat music lovers.

The programme of American artists started from the ceremony in Mukams Palace where the State Symphonic Orchestra was presented with musical instruments by the USA Diplomatic Mission.

Pianist John Ferguson, the Executive Director of Voices of America, prize-winner of USA National Award for innovative activity in cultural exchange, the organizer of international jazz festivals gives concerts around the world and shares his performance skills with the beginners. In Ashgabat, John Ferguson gave piano master class to the students of Turkmen State Specialized Music College named after Danatar Ovezov.


Conductor, tutor and author Michael Levansky is another member of the group. As a conductor he made his first debut when he was 13 having peformed his own composition. Talented boy entered Sankt Petersburg conservatoire. Today, he has Professor’s degree in instrumental ensembles of De Paul Music University. Taking an opportunity, Michael Levinsky shared professional secrets with future conductors.

Bonny Whiting is the third member. Despite her youth, Bonny has Doctorate of Science of San Diego California University. Currently, she is a head of Percussion Department of Washington University. She conducted trainings to the students of music college, who study percussion instruments play. The master class started quite interesting - Bonny hit the drum with drumstick and the students hit regular wooden table. The sound was different by the tonality but Bonny made an accent on the speed, lightness and mood of the students.

During their visit to Turkmenistan, American guests held master classes in special music school under National Conservatoire where they easily found a common language with yyoung generation of musicians.

Besides the theory sessions, American artists had rehearsals with the musicians of the State Symphonic Orchestra preparing for joint performance.

The moment came and the concert was opened by the Blue Rhapsody of George Gershwin, which is one of the famous works of American composer who put together jazz and classical music.


The programme of the concert included Japanese Flutes Fantasies of Alan Hovhaness, Revery of August Rid Thomas, Rhythmic Fanfares of Jennifer Hitchtone. The melodies reflecting rich diversity of music traditions of two peoples were sounded at the concert. Right after beautiful and romantic Japanese Flutes Fantasies, soft and intelligent Aman Agadjikov’s Spiritual Renewal was played. It was replaced by lyrical Flowers of Elvan of Danatar Hydyrov. The oriental theme was harmonically supplemented by Nury Halmamedov’s Symphonic Pictures of Turkmenia.

The concert was accomplished under the Mambo from the Westside Story by Leonard Bernstein. The audience gave standing ovation to the guests from the USA and the musicians of the State Symphonic Orchestra.

- We are impressed by the talent and hard work of the musicians of the orchestra of Rasul Klychev, - Bonny Whiting shared her impression. Normally, the notes of the music are sent in advance for musicians to study and feel the character of the play. But there were some postal mess-ups and the notes were received on the eve of the concert. The musicians had to master the works of American composers literally on the move and did it very well. I have an impression that there’s nothing impossible for Turkmen colleagues. We respect their outstanding work. I am happy to visit Turkmenistan and get to know its rich culture and traditions of your country.

Tamara Glazunova,
photo by Yuri Shkurin