Reimagining Flamenco guided its audience down a path through the Andalusian foothills. At first, it excited the senses with vibrant rasguedeado strumming accented by powerful piano keys that created the effect of a salty Mediterranean breeze, then it pulled you into a serene madness as melancholy strings slid down octaves that left one weary and uncomfortably aroused.
In the first ensemble, Soundstreams veteran, Serouj Kradjian, led on piano accompanied by one-time child prodigy Grisha Goryachev on guitar. They married alternating sounds, confronting the audience with the aggression sought out by the eager fingers of the artists who wanted to push the limits of their own noise. Together, the pair introduced the audience to their unique interpretation of flamenco’s infectious rhythms, supplanting preconceptions with newfound wonder. Closing the first act accompanied by members of the Chamber Orchestra, they earned their standing ovation for their arrangment of Paco de Lucia’s Zyrab.
After the intermission, the Chamber Orchestra premiered Andre Ristic’s Boiling Song, an original piece commissioned by Soundstreams. His mathematical inspiration was evident in the perfect meld of uneasy slides down the bass cleft and the awkward honks coming from the woodwinds. The experience left the listener in the frightened state of awakening from a forgotten dream.
This was my first time attending a Soundstreams show, with nothing to guide my expectations aside from previous Provocative Penguin articles. My readings couldn’t have prepared me for the evening’s performance, and I left with only one regret… I should have started going sooner.