Kitka Brings ‘Powerful Women’s Voices, Joined Together’ From East To Western
The Oakland ensemble Kitka has sung intricate harmonies from Eastern Europe for four decades. Users Shira Cion and Kelly Atkins speak about the team’s brand brand new record record album, Evening Star.
LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:
The daylight is dwindling away. The solstice comes on Friday. Therefore let us pay attention to some warming songs from Eastern Europe that celebrate the summer season upon us.
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, “MOMCI KOLEDARCI”)
KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Bulgarian).
GARCIA-NAVARRO: The record record album “Evening Star” features harmonies unique to Balkan, Slavic and Caucasian lands. But listed here is the twist – they are offered up by Kitka, a vocal ensemble of several years standing situated in the San Francisco Bay region. Shira Cion could be the team’s creative director. She joins us through the studios of KQED. Welcome.
SHIRA CION: so excellent to be right here, Lulu. Many thanks.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: additionally with us is Kelly Atkins. She is another Kitkat – i do believe that is what you call yourselves, appropriate?
KELLY ATKINS: It Really Is, yes. Hi.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Hi. Shira, i’ll focus on you. You are quoted into the press notes saying this music springs from the, estimate, “instinct to come together and sing when you look at the deep, dark heart of wintertime.” I enjoy that, in addition. Performs this music help bring the body temperature up?
CION: they really think it most likely does. And it’s really been interesting. You realize, plenty studies are now actually being released about type of the real and cognitive and social great things about harmony performing and choral performing. And i believe all of the science is simply showing a thing that Eastern European villagers have actually understood for hundreds of years, which can be that whenever times are tough, when climate conditions are cool, where simply surviving through a challenging period actually calls upon communities in the future together, it is an occasion to sing. And I also think performing does carry spirits. It does type of synchronize our organisms together. I must say I do think it will help us endure through attempting times.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Kelly, that image associated with the deep, dark heart of wintertime can be a metaphor, i suppose, regarding the variety of music that this might be. Let me know exactly exactly what – exactly just how it is seen by you.
ATKINS: Well, we additionally utilize the metaphor associated with the rounds of life. A number of the tracks, while you probably noticed, through the record are literally about cold weather. Plus some of these are concerning the cold weather of life. So we sort of see plenty of the tracks that individuals sing not merely concerning the vacations themselves but in regards to the rounds that people undergo within our very own life.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: let us pay attention to a little bit of the name track. It is a song that is bulgarian “Evening celebrity.”
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, “ZVEZDA VECERNICA”)
KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Bulgarian).
GARCIA-NAVARRO: i eventually got to inform you, it is like something profoundly thrumming and ancient. You understand, it comes down – it surely arises from this type of important destination. It certainly does. It really is amazing. Kelly, i am aware you have history as an indie rocker. Just exactly just What got you thinking about Eastern European vocal music?
ATKINS: Well, the time that is first saw the Bulgarian Women’s Choir, I happened to be at Grace Cathedral. And I sat into the pews and simply wept. And I could not determine exactly what had been occurring if you ask me. Plus it simply rocked me personally on an extremely, extremely deep degree. And so I think that has been my gateway medication, even as we call it into the team. Just about everyone has our gateway medication of Bulgarian choir music.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: (Laughter) Shira, individuals additionally might be astonished to discover that there is really numerous vocal groups right here in the usa focusing on Eastern music that is european. There Is Kitka. There is Planina located in Denver. There is the Yale Slavic Chorus, that has been around nearly 50 years. Just just What do you consider makes.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: . The songs so irresistible to vocalists that are female?
CION: Well, i believe for anyone of us who I would personally state recognize as liberal US feminists, there is one thing concerning the quality of effective ladies’ sounds joined up with together in this really real, extremely harmony that is close often dissonant harmony designs that actually attracts a modern American feminine sensibility.
(SOUNDBITE OF UNIDENTIFIED KITKA SONG)
KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (performing in spanish).
CION: And they are countries where work ended up being typically split by sex. And ladies had been familiar with creating in community and producing music together in community. We had been really and truly just referring to this within the greenroom previous today – exactly exactly how many of us whom sing in Kitka are a lot more oriented in direction of kind of collective and harmony singing than individualistic, soloistic performing. And I also think it kind of counters the kind of strongly trend that is individualistic America values a great deal. It is, like.
CION: . Everybody else to.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: The solamente musician.
CION: . Themself (ph).
CION: The solamente musician. And also this is actually a form that is communal really can just fly when there is a residential area of men and women taking part in it.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Why don’t we pay attention now up to a carol that is ukrainian your record.
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, “V HOSPODARON’KA”)
KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Singing in Ukrainian).
GARCIA-NAVARRO: which means this is truly A ukrainian carol for New season’s. And also you really traveled here some time straight back and met up with A ukrainian team. How about your other travels to execute in Eastern Europe? What is been the response from audiences?
ATKINS: we had been in Serbia about – ended up being it 5 https://mail-order-bride.net/ukrainian-brides years ago?
ATKINS: and it also had been my very first time with Kitka traveling abroad and performing music that is serbian Serbians. And I also really ended up being stressed going. I became thinking, who am I as a american to go and sing these tracks right in front of the people where, you understand, they usually have these roots that are deep these tracks? However in reality, we had been gotten really warmly. Plus it was an experience that is cathartic both the viewers as well as for us.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: therefore, Kelly and Shira, this is certainly to the two of you. What is your favorite song regarding the record?
CION: Oh, that is a hardcore one.
CION: What you think about maybe “Blazentsv”?
ATKINS: Perhaps “Blazentsv.”
CION: Yeah. This is simply not theoretically a cold temperatures track. But it is a track that people feel articulates characteristics that individuals all make an effort to summon in ourselves throughout the yuletide season. It is a musical environment of “The Beatitudes” by the composer that is russian Martynov. And, you realize, they are calling the listener to embody characteristics of generosity and compassion and kindness, residing just making sure that other people might merely live and simply because contentment that is true arises from types of going resistant to the grain of greed and egoism and materialism and physical physical physical violence and living carefully, living kindly in order that other people can have the kingdom of paradise right here on the planet.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: This is certainly a holiday message that is good. Shira Cion and Kelly Atkins through the Kitka female’s Vocal Ensemble. Their brand new record is called “Evening Star.” Many thanks both truly.
CION: many thanks a great deal for having us.
ATKINS: many thanks.
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, “ZAPOVEDI BLAZENSTV/ THE BEATITUDES”)
KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Russian).
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Correction Jan. 18, 2019
A past version of the internet summary listed a wrong record album title. Kitka’s showcased record is named Evening celebrity, perhaps not Harmonies of Heaven and world.