Following a chance encounter on BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction show, Áine O’Dwyer and Mohammed Issa “Matona” made their live collaborative debut at the 2016 Counterflows festival in Glasgow. Now performing together for the second time, they bring their union of Tanzanian and Irish music to Greenpoint’s San Damiano Mission.
Mohammed Issa “Matona” is a multi-instrumentalist and teacher renowned for his performance ability and commitment to the preservation of Taarab, the traditional music of the East African island of Zanzibar, Tanzania. A unique style of Arab-African music played with the instruments of Middle Eastern countries, Taarab arrived in Zanzibar from Egypt in 1870 and has since evolved into a niche popular music form currently taught and played at the Dhow Countries Music Academy (DCMA) in Zanzibar, where Matona teaches and serves as Artistic Director. Matona has been thoroughly appreciated at the DCMA for the dedication and innovation he has brought to educating young and often disadvantaged people as well as for his integration of a diverse range of musical forms into the curriculum. He is best known for his extraordinary virtuosity in playing oud, violin, nay, tash kota, saxophone, percussion, keyboard, ganun, guitar, cello, and clarinet.
Áine O’Dwyer‘s practice lies somewhere between her role as a vocalist, musician, accompanist, improviser, composer, performer, listener, sonic Stalker, and audience member. In recent years, the pipe organ has become an integral site for her experimentation, culminating in the albums Locusts and Gegenschein. This year’s Gallarais experiments with acoustic decay and was developed during her self-made residency at the Brunel tunnel shaft in London. All three releases celebrate her interests in found and forgotten spaces, chance choreographies, acoustic phenomena, the act of listening, and the search for alternative scorings through a combined performativity of instruments, drawings, space, time, memory, and the body. Past solo releases include Anything Bright or Startling? and Music for Church Cleaners.
San Damiano Mission is not wheelchair accessible. There are three steps leading up to the building and we are happy to accommodate anyone who needs assistance. It is located three blocks away from the Nassau G subway stop. Please write at least three days before the event and we will make every effort to accommodate you.