by Chris Conde
Music festival season is upon us, and to kick it off the Alamo City’s very own International Music Festival is back to highlight some of the best music our planet has to offer.
Musical Bridges Around The World, or MBAW, the non profit who curates the festival, was founded back in 1998 by Russian-born concert pianist Dr. Anya Grokhovski, and with the help of a group of music lovers, MBAW’s mission became simple and clear: "To unite, educate, and inspire through culturally diverse performing, and visual arts programing."
Since its inception in 2013, The International Music Festival has highlighted a vast range of culture through a broad spectrum of musical performances. Back again for two weeks of pretty amazing showcases, the festival will take place in a variety of venues, including The Empire Theatre and The Tobin Center For Performing Arts. Oh, and best of all, it’s free.
We’ve compiled a run down of the type of performances you’ll be able to experience at this years International Music Fest.
America: The Jones Family Singers & Soul Fruit Gospel
Sunday, February 12
Take me to church! The Jones Family Singers & Soul Fruit Gospel channel the holy ghost through their powerful manifestations of vintage gospel and R&B. 3pm, Free, Empire Theatre, 224 E. Houston St.
Spain: Victor Prieto
Tuesday, February 14
Combining the the controlled chaos of jazz fusion while mixing in some latin elements, Victor Prieto takes accordion-playing to incredibly technical depths. 7:30pm, Free, Southwest School Of Arts Chapel, 1201 Navarro St.
Canada: Zoe Keating
Thursday, February 16
Layering her powerful cello riffs through the use of looping pedals, Zoe Keating stitches magnificent compositions together live for a true aural delight. 7:30pm, Free, Southwest School Of Arts Chapel, 1201 Navarro St.
Indoenesia: Joey Alexander Trio
Saturday, February 18
Pianist child prodigy and the first Indonesian artist to break into the Billboard 200, Joey Alexander can seriously shred 88 keys. Oh yea, and he’s just fourteen. 7:30pm, Free, Empire Theatre, 224 E. Houston St.
Armenia: Kevork Mourad
Thursday, February 23
A visual artist member of Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, Syrian born Kevork Mourad translates sound into pictures as he captivates audiences with his technique of spontaneous painting as live musicians perform. 7:30pm, Free, Carlos Alvarez Studio Theater, 100 Auditorium Cir.
Argentina: JP Jofre Hard Tango Chamber Band
Saturday, February 25
Born and raised in Argentina, JP Jofre skillfully plays the bandoneon (similar to the accordion), in a delightful display of raw musicianship and control of his instrument. 7:30pm, Free, Empire Theatre, 224 E. Houston St.
Cuba: Gonzalo Rubalcaba
Sunday, February 26
Grammy award winning Afro-Cuban jazz pianist and composer Gonzalo Rubalcaba moves across a piano for an entertaining performance that seems humanly impossible. 3pm, Free, Tobin Center For The Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir.