John Kameel Farah

Marrying the worlds of piano and electronica

Words By Stephanie Taralson
Photos By Viktor Richardsson

Date: 15.09.16
Venue: Roter Salon / Volksbühne
Time: 19:00

For anyone feeling torn between the urge to get spruced up for an evening at the Berlin Philharmonic and the lure of a Kater Blau all-nighter, good news: John Kameel Farah’s music is a marriage of piano and electronic sounds that scratches an itch most of us didn’t even know we had.

Historically, composers have been inhibited mainly by the constraints of the instrument they were writing for – and those are becoming fewer and farther between. Thanks to ongoing advances in music technology, manufacturers are now producing instruments like the Yamaha Disclavier, a grand piano outfitted with MIDI and computer controls.

Farah’s September 15th concert at the Volksbühne features his genre-bending compositions for piano and electronics, which span the spectrum of experimental, baroque, and arabic. The entire second half of the concert will comprise the Berlin premiere of his new work for the Yamaha Disclavier, ‘Fantasia and Fugue’, commissioned by Vancouver-based Western Front Society. Typical for Farah, the new work is simultaneously gesturing to an established genre of classical music while also exploring new ideas of form and function. This piece – and the concert on the whole – promises to be imaginative, boundless, and wildly creative.

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