Orientations: Double Bill - Amirtha Kidambi and Elder Ones & The Ras Unit

Fri, May 5, 2017 8:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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As part of its new month-long series, Orientations, Alwan for the Arts presents a double bill performance.

Amirtha Kidambi and Elder Ones, performing a wide range of music from free improvisation and avant-jazz to experimental bands and new music; and,

The Ras Unit, playing world music of the east/jazz/free jazz. Sounds of peace and consciousness, transforming the vibrations in today's war ridden world.

Tickets: $20 General Admissions | $15 Students & Seniors

Available at the door or online (Buy now)

Doors open at 7:30 pm


Amirtha Kidambi & Elder Ones

Amirtha Kidambi, vocals

Matt Nelson, soprano saxophone

Brandon Lopes, bass

Max Jafee, drums

View and hear Sathya Yuga and Kali Yuga

The instrumentalists draw from a wide variety of vocabularies -- from hip-hop to the avant-garde -- each bringing their highly individual language to the group. The quartet uses composed material and loose structures for improvisation over a bed of Indian harmonium drones and non-traditional utilization of the instrument.

The Ras Unit

Ras Moshe-Burnett, tenor sax, soprano sax, and flutes;

Bill Cole-Sona, hojok, piri, nagaswarm, didjeridu

Larry Rowland, bass

Warren Smith, percussion

About the Artists:

Amirtha Kidambi is the composer and bandleader for the Elder Ones. She is also a soloist, collaborator and ensemble member in groups including Charlie Looker's folk band Seaven Teares, Mary Halvorson's newest quintet Code Girl, Pat Spadine's analog percussion and light ensemble Ashcan Orchestra and Darius Jones’ vocal quartet Elizabeth-Caroline Unit. As an improviser, she has performed with Matana Roberts, Tyshawn Sorey, Daniel Carter, Darius Jones, Peter Evans, Trevor Dunn, Ava Mendoza and many innovators in the New York scene. In 2016, she received a commission from the Jerome Foundation for her quartet, the Elder Ones, at Roulette and artist residency at EMPAC to record the group’s debut album, Holy Science, released on Northern Spy. Kidambi is also a student of traditional Indian Carnatic vocal music and received a study and research fellowship from the Asian Cultural Council in 2017 to study in Chennai, South India.

The Elder Ones is a quartet performing the compositions of vocalist Amirtha Kidambi. Situated in concentric musical circles and communities in New York City, her collaborators saxophonist Matt Nelson, bassist Brandon Lopez and drummer Max Jaffe have crossed paths in the DIY underground and in various permutations of free improvisers in venues and concert halls across New York City.

The Ras Unit

Ras Moshe Burnett (Theodore Burnett III) hails from a family of jazz musicians. His paternal grandfatherplayed saxophones in the Big Bands led by Chick Webb, Louis Armstrong, Don Redman, Henri Woode, Lucky Millender, Earl Bostic and many others.His father played saxophones throughout Brooklyn in the late 60's to the early 80's.Ras began performing with reggae and soul cover bands in the mid-80s, and his own Jazz/New Music ensembles formed in 1994. He was a member of the Neues Kabarett collective at The Brecht Forum from 1999 on as well as his own series in 2000 called "Music Now" that continues to this day at The Brooklyn Commons, with monthly presentations.

Ras is a nine year member of double reedist Bill Cole's Untempered Ensemble and has made music in many other ensembles as well. A CD series, covering a 20 year period of past live performances is set for release later in 2017. Ras is also returning student currently pursuing a graduate degree in music therapy.

Bill Cole-Sona is an American jazz musician, composer, educator and author. An admired innovator, Cole successfully combines the sounds of untempered instruments with an American art form -jazz. Cole specialises in non-Western wind instruments, especially double reed horns: including Chinese sonas, Korean hook and pier; Indian nagaswarm and shenai and Tibetan trumpet; as well as the Australian digeridoo and Ghanaian flute. Cole is the leader of the Untempered Ensemble, a group he founded in 1992. He has performed with Sam Rivers, Billy Bang, Jayne Cortez, Julius Hemphill, Ornette Coleman, James Blood Ulmer, William Parker, Fred Ho, Gerald Weasley and others, at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Town Hall, Symphony Space and multiple venues throughout the US and in Europe.


Alwan for the Arts is supported, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the New York State Council of the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Last updated: 2017-04-20 13:02:26

Amirtha Kidambi & Elder Ones
Amirtha Kidambi & Elder Ones
Ras Moshe-Burnett
Ras Moshe-Burnett

Alwan for the Arts

16 Beaver Street, 4th Floor
(between Broad St. and Broadway)
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732-3261

Alwan Auction 2016

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