Kitka Brings ‘Powerful Women’s Voices, Joined Together’ From East To Western

Kitka Brings ‘Powerful Women’s Voices, Joined Together’ From East To Western

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For four years, the Oakland ensemble Kitka has sung intricate harmonies from Eastern Europe. Users Shira Cion and Kelly Atkins speak about the team’s brand new record album, Evening celebrity.


The daylight is dwindling away. The solstice comes on Friday. So why don’t we pay attention to some warming songs from Eastern Europe that celebrate the summer season upon us.


KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Bulgarian).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: The record album « star » features harmonies unique to Balkan, Slavic and Caucasian lands evening. But listed here is the twist – they are offered up by Kitka, an ensemble that is vocal of years standing situated in the bay area Bay region. Shira Cion may be the group’s creative manager. She joins us through the studios of KQED. Welcome.

SHIRA CION: So great to be right here, Lulu. Many thanks.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: additionally with us is Kelly Atkins. She is another Kitkat – i believe that’s just what you call yourselves, appropriate?

KELLY ATKINS: It Really Is, yes. Hi.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Hi. Shira, i will focus on you. You are quoted into the press notes saying this music springs from the, estimate, « instinct to get together and sing within the deep, dark heart of wintertime. » I favor that, in addition. Performs this music help bring up the body’s temperature?

CION: they really think it probably does. And it’s really been interesting. You realize, a lot of studies are now actually being released about type of the real and cognitive and social advantages of harmony performing and choral performing. And i believe all of the science is simply showing a thing that Eastern European villagers have understood for hundreds of years, that is that whenever times are tough, whenever climate conditions are cool, where just surviving through an arduous season actually calls upon communities in the future together, it really is a time to sing. And I also think performing does carry spirits. It does kind of synchronize our organisms together. I truly do think it will help us endure through trying times.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Kelly, that image associated with the deep, dark heart of wintertime can also be a metaphor, i suppose, associated with form of music that this really is. Let me know exactly exactly what – just just how the truth is it.

ATKINS: Well, we additionally make use of the metaphor regarding the cycles of life. A number of the tracks, while you probably noticed, through the record album are literally about cold temperatures. Plus some of these are in regards to the cold weather of life. So we sort of see plenty of the tracks that people go through in our own lives that we sing not only about the holidays themselves but about the cycles.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: let us pay attention to a little bit of the name track. It really is A bulgarian song – « Evening celebrity. »


KITKA WOMEN’S VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Bulgarian).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: i eventually got to let you know, it feels as though something profoundly ancient and thrumming. You understand, it comes – it certainly originates from this type of crucial destination. It certainly does. It is amazing. Kelly, i realize you have history being an indie rocker. Exactly just What got you thinking about Eastern European music that is vocal?

ATKINS: Well, the time that is first saw the Bulgarian Women’s Choir, I happened to be at Grace Cathedral. And I also sat when you look at the pews and merely wept. And I also could not find out exactly what ended up being occurring in my experience. Plus it simply rocked me personally on a tremendously, very deep level. And so I think that has been my gateway medication, in the group as we call it. Just about everyone has our gateway medication of Bulgarian choir music.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: (Laughter) Shira, individuals additionally can be amazed to find out that there is really numerous vocal groups right right here in the us focusing on Eastern European music. There’s Kitka. There is Planina situated in Denver. There is the Yale Slavic Chorus, which was around very nearly 50 years. just What do you consider makes.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: . The thereforengs so irresistible to vocalists that are ukrainian mail brides female?

CION: Well, i do believe for the people of us whom I would personally state recognize as liberal American feminists, there is one thing concerning the quality of effective ladies’ sounds joined up with together in this extremely real, extremely close harmony, often dissonant harmony designs that actually attracts a modern American feminine sensibility.


KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (performing in spanish).

CION: And they are cultures where work had been usually split by sex. And ladies had been familiar with creating in community and music that is creating in community. We had been really just dealing with this into the greenroom previous today – just just how most of us whom sing in Kitka are a lot more oriented in direction of kind of collective and harmony performing than individualistic, soloistic performing. and I also think it type of counters the kind of strongly individualistic trend that America values a great deal. It is, like.

CION: . Everybody 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 take flight whenever there is a residential district of men and women taking part in it.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: let us pay attention now up to a carol that is ukrainian your record.


KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Ukrainian).

GARCIA-NAVARRO: which means this is obviously a carol that is ukrainian New season’s. And also you really traveled here some time straight back and met up having A ukrainian team. How about your other travels to do in Eastern Europe? What is been the effect from audiences?

ATKINS: we had been in Serbia about – ended up being it 5 years ago?

ATKINS: and it also ended up being my very first time with Kitka traveling abroad and performing music that is serbian Serbians. And I actually ended up being stressed going. I happened to be thinking, whom have always been We as a us to go and sing these tracks in the front of the people where, you realize, they will have these roots that are deep these tracks? However in fact, we had been gotten really warmly. Also it really was a cathartic experience for both the viewers as well as for us.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: therefore, Kelly and Shira, it is to you both. What is your favorite track from the record album?

CION: Oh, that is a challenging one.

CION: What do you believe about maybe « Blazentsv »?

ATKINS: Possibly « Blazentsv. »

CION: Yeah. This is not theoretically a cold temperatures track. But it is a track during the holiday season that we feel articulates qualities that we all try to summon in ourselves. It really is a musical setting 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, living merely in order for other people might just live and simply because contentment that is true originates from sort of going up against the grain of greed and egoism and materialism and physical violence and residing carefully, residing kindly making sure that others can have the kingdom of paradise right 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 album that is new is « Evening Star. » Many thanks both quite definitely.

CION: many thanks a great deal for having us.

ATKINS: many thanks.


KITKA LADIES’ VOCAL ENSEMBLE: (Performing in Russian).

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Correction Jan. 18, 2019

A past form of the net summary listed a incorrect record title. Kitka’s showcased record is named Star, not Harmonies of Heaven and Earth evening.