WOMAD Sri Lanka 2005 ::: Sri Lanka's Festival of World of Music and Drums Photos
Press Releases of Sri Lanka Tourist Board

WOMAD Sri Lanka Showcases Biggest International Drummers

Colombo, Wednesday September 7, 2005: Sri Lanka’s world-first Festival of Drums is set to put the country firmly on the international  music map as it brings together some of the biggest names in global entertainment.

 To be held from September 21 – 25, WOMAD Sri Lanka Festival of Drums boasts a stellar line-up of performers

Sri Lanka Tourist Board (SLTB) Chairman, Mr Udaya Nanayakkara, said the artistes scheduled to perform at the SLTB event are a unique combination of talent from around the world.

“To have such musical diversity, a melting pot of talent come together in the one location, will truly be an unrivalled experience,” said Mr Nanayakkara.

“I urge music lovers everywhere to experience the first ever WOMAD Sri Lanka for themselves,” he added.

The line-up includes world number one drummer Bill Cobham (USA), the Drummers of Burundi, direct from central Africa, legendary Indian drummer and composer Trilok Gurtu and Joji Hirota & the Taiko Drummers, from Japan and the UK.

US-based drummer Bill Cobham, also an accomplished record composer and producer, has performed on hundreds of records and collaborated with some of the world’s most prolific drummers.  He first recorded with the legendary Miles Davis in 1969 and later performed with him in Japan (1983)

Bill Cobham has also performed with such greats as Roberta Flack and George Benson and had a brush with Hollywood in 1988, when he, together with musician Peter Gabriel, recorded “Passion”, the soundtrack of the Martin Scorsese film “The Last Temptation of Christ.”

The Drummers of Burundi are from the small African country situated between Zaire and Tanzania. The tradition of playing the drums is handed down from generation to generation and is considered by local inhabitants as the most important aspect of the country’s musical tradition.

Joji Hirota and his troupe of Taiko Drummers (Japan/UK) will showcase, in dramatic style, the ‘taiko’, a large barrel drum dating back centuries in Japanese culture.

A Japanese percussionist, composer and teacher, Joji Hirota is a veteran of WOMAD festivals. Drawing from nature and his studies in Buddhism, the result is a soulful, energetic performance.

Joji Hirota has also composed for several BBC dramas and documentaries.

Legendary Indian drummer and composer Trilok Gurtu, whose music has influenced musicians worldwide, will also feature at this year’s Festival of Drums.

Born in Bombay into a musically-gifted family, Gurtu went to Europe in the early eighties and, in the following two decades, played with music legends at the sharp edge of world fusion and modern jazz, including Don Cherry, John McLaughlin, and Jan Garbarek.

In addition to being a percussionist and singer, Gurtu’s talents include being a renowned composer and an entertaining - often hilarious - stage performer.

Other artistes include Cuban band Asere, who provide a fresh, contemporary sound to more traditional Cuban beats and the unique Chemirani Zarb Trio (Iran) who have mastered the art of playing the ‘zarb’, the classical drum of Persia.

Adding local talent to the line-up is classical Kandyan dancer and master choreographer Ravibandhu Vidyapathy, who will bring his distinct drumming and dance traditions to the festival.

WOMAD Sri Lanka Festival of Drums will feature four indoor theatre concerts at Bishop’s College Auditorium, beginning with three performances at 7.30pm (September 21-23). The final concert will start at 3.30pm on September 24.

These photos may freely used for news on WOMAD Sri Lanka 2005. They may not be used for any other commercial purpose without permission. If you are an artist in these photos or a person experienced this great event we are happy to share our works as a souvenir for WOMAD Sri Lanka 2005.
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