Sat 3/14 @ 8PM
The Around the World music series hosted by Kent’s Standing Rock Cultural Arts has allowed listeners to travel all over the globe without leaving northeast Ohio. This week, it will take them to Vietnam — not the Vietnam of fraught history, but the peaceful country of Buddhism and its deep, complex musical heritage.
Dr. Phong Nguyen, a musician and ethnomusicologist, born into a family of musicians, began his training in his native country in the mid 50s, when he was a child. He got a religious, academic and music education at a temple before being ordained himself. He later studied in Japan and Paris, where he earned his doctorate in 1982, writing his dissertation on the music of Vietnamese Buddhists. Since then, he’s been considered one of the world’s foremost experts on the topic, and has broadened his research to include Buddhist music in other parts of the region including Cambodia, Myanmar and Indonesia.
His program at Kent’s North Water Street Gallery will feature a demonstration of different styles of singing, chant, cantillation and recitation with translations will be provided along with explanations of the significance of the pieces in Buddhist practice. He’ll accompany himself on a variety of traditional percussion and string instruments.
It’s a $10 suggested donation or pay what you can. There’s a meet-and-greet prior to the performance at 7:30 with light refreshments and drinks.