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Ben Holmes & Patrick Farrell + Huda Asfour Trio
April 11 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Ben Holmes & Patrick Farrell
in collaboration with Natalie C. Sousa
“The Conqueror Worm Suite” On tour
Original music and animation inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Conqueror Worm”
“…the most irresistibly yet understatedly macabre Halloween music played on any stage in this city…” (New York Music Daily)
The Huda Asfour Trio
Huda Asfour – oud/vocals/compositions
Asha Santee – drums/cajon
Derek B. Bond – electric bass
ABOUT A SUITE
Ben Holmes & Patrick Farrell (trumpet and accordion) are delighted to perform The Conqueror Worm Suite, a 6-part suite of music, words and images based on Edgar Allan Poes The Conqueror Worm. The duo present their original compositions, incorporating a reading of the poem, in conjunction with a projected set of animated illustrations by visual artist Natalie C. Sousa.
Edgar Allan Poes The Conqueror Worm is a short five-stanza poem containing rich imagery and a cosmic scope that has inspired numerous artists and musicians. Using Igor Stravinskys The Soldiers Tale as an inspiration, the The Conqueror Worm Suite consists of a reading of the poem surrounded by music inspired by it. Holmes and Farrell share compositional duties, drawing on their knowledge of Eastern European folk music and the work of composers including Shostakovich, Chopin and Duke Ellington, to create a set of music that works with and against the texts imagery and narrative elements. The music allows room for their finely-tuned improvisational interplay, and the shared compositional format allows them to tweak and reference each others themes and moods, lending playful moments to the proceedings. The visuals by Sousa are projected on a screen adjacent to the performers, further drawing the audience into the landscape of Poes vision.
The suite is approximately 30 minutes long. To create a full concert-length program, the duo draws from their existing repertoire of original works and arrangements of music by Shostakovich, Satie and others.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Ben Holmes & Patrick Farrell are a trumpet & accordion duo whose performances range from klezmer, original concert music and improvisation to interpretations of Romantic-era composers and more. Accordionist Farrell (Yo-Yo Ma, Frank London, Yiddish Art Trio) and trumpeter Holmes (Erik Satie Quartet, Trio Blastphemy, Ben Holmes Quartet, Tarras Band) bring together a unique array of experiences to present a truly original program of music ranging from the 19th-21st Century and beyond. Referring to themselves as New York Citys Premiere Klezmer/Spaghetti Western/Improv/Pop/Waltz/Freak-Out Trumpet and Accordion Duo, Holmes and Farrell play originals, folk melodies, and music by Satie, Shostakovich, Chopin, the Beach Boys, and Ornette Coleman.
Natalie C. Sousa is a creative director specializing in book packaging. She currently works at Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group. Outside of her profession, she takes on personal projects and collaborations with other artists. The Conqueror Worm Suite is her first animation collaboration with Ben Holmes & Patrick Farrell.
HUDA ASFOUR is a performer, composer and engineer who has worked, studied, and collaborated with artists in Tunisia, Gaza, Ramallah, Egypt, Lebanon and the United States. Hudas formal training in music began in Tunis at the age of 13, after which she moved to Palestine. In 1996 she joined the National Conservatory of Music in Gaza and later moved to Ramallah where she was mentored by Khaled Jubran. Huda also trained under the famous qanoun player Said Rajab. In 2004, while in Egypt, Huda co-founded Jehar Band, with Tamer Abu Ghazaleh.
Hudas debut release Mars, Back and Forth is a progressive experimentation and reinterpretation of familiar arabic styles alongside a compelling push for the inter-stellar home, self, and futurism. Mars also features Kinan Azmeh, John Hadfield, Kris Funn and Nadim Khoury. Asfour writes, Mars “was my search for home and for identity. A trip to a world without borders. Undefined by labels and boundaries. The god of war, that shaped my early years, from the mountains of Lebanon where I was born during the Israeli invasion, to the early years of the second intifada (uprising) in Ramallah.”
Since the release of Mars, Huda has published a 15min original film score for the short film Blue Dive by Egyptian film maker Mostafa Youssef. In collaboration with Sri Lankan American poet, Gowri Koneswaran, together they have also premiered the multimedia performance Yasmneen’ featuring flamenco dancer Wathec Sleiman and Canadian tap dancer Melissa Frakman, in Washington DC. More recently she also recorded an experimental album with the group DUNUM.
Huda is also a co-founder of the DC Palestinian Film and Arts Festival (dcpfaf.org), a volunteer run 501C3 organization.
In addition to her work as a musician, Huda also conducts biomedical engineering research as a post- doctoral scientist in the department of pharmacology and physiology at the George Washington University.
The Huda Asfour Trio features Asha Santee (drums/cajon) and Derek B. Bond (electric bass)