Musical Performance: Final Concert with "The Other Point of View" and Guests

Thu, August 22, 2013 8:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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The international composers collective “The Other Point Of View” is a collaboration of four accomplished instrumentalists from different parts of the world, who have all been based in New York for more then a decade. In addition to their own individual national backgrounds, they bring musical influences from India, Africa, Brazil, Iraq, and the United States in a unique musical soundscape.

One particular quality about their overall sound is the buzuq, a long-necked string instrument, which is related to the Greek buzuqi or the Turkish saz, played by Palestinian musician, Tareq Abboushi. Percussionist/guitarist George Mel from Georgia, Greek bassist Apostolos Sideris and keyboardist Manu Koch from Switzerland complete the quartet, best described as "a musical blend of cultures with a jazz mentality”.

This will be the final concert for "The Other Point of View" as a quartet, as two of its members will soon be leaving the country to return to their respective countries of origin.


Tareq Abboushi: Buzuq, percussion, keyboards, voice, composition
Manu Koch: Keyboards, composition
George Mel: Percussion, voice, composition
Apostolos Sideris: Double bass, composition


Tickets: $15 (Available at the door)

Doors open at 7:30pm


Triple Life by Manu Koch:

Departure/Arrival by Tareq Abboushi:


Tareq Abboushi
Abboushi graduated from William Paterson University with a B.M. in Jazz Piano Performance. He began playing the buzuq in1997, starting at the National Conservatory of Music in Palestine. Since his arrival to New York City, he has performed with such notable musicians as Simon Shaheen, Omar Farouk Tekbilek, and Grammy-Award-Winner Dan Zanes in the USA, Canada, the Middle East, and Europe. His teaching profile includes lecture demonstrations at Columbia University, NYU, Juilliard, and Agder University- Norway (2008-2009) among others. Abboushi's discography includes "One" and "Mumtastic" with his group Shusmo, the acclaimed "Two Rivers" and "Inana" with Amir ElSaffar, and appearances on three albums with Dan Zanes: “Parades and Panoramas,” “House Party” and “Night Time!” (Winner of “Best children's CD of the year” by He composed and performed music for the award-winning film "Chicken Heads" (best short film, 2010 Dubai Film Festival). His participation in other film scores includes the award-winning soundtrack for the film “Encounter Point” (best musical score, 2006 Bend Film Festival), “Man From Plains” (2007) and the Oscar-nominated “Rachel Getting Married” (2008), the last two directed by Johnathan Demme.

Manu Koch
Keyboardist/pianist/composer Manu Koch began honing his craft under the influence of Bach and company in Baar, Switzerland, where, under the tutelage of maestro Eberhard Rodorf, he spent his early years enmeshed in the European classical tradition. By age 17, with a solid technical background, he gravitated towards jazz and other contemporary music. Only a few years later he decided to take the leap to the US where he attended Berklee College of Music and found himself immediately at home in the multicultural Boston area. He quickly became an in-demand keyboardist/pianist, performing and recording with a broad range of bands and musicians in a number of different styles, among them Malian kora master/vocalist Balla Tounkara, the Wally's Café funk house band, the Caribbean jazz band Ron Reid & Sun Steel and various Brazilian projects which featured vocalist Teresa Inês, bassist Leonardo Cioglia, flutist Fernando Brandão and saxophonist/clarinetist Anat Cohen. Since his relocation to New York in 2000 he has continued and expanded on his early work with groove-based jazz and popular music artists. Manu has toured with Afropop diva Angélique Kidjo and performed with the groups of Cape Verdean vocalist Fantcha and Santana bassist Benny Rietveld. He is the regular keyboardist for Nigerian talking drum master Kofo The Wonderman, and frequently collaborates with urban folk and jazz vocalist/guitarist KJ Denhert and Moroccan jazz vocalist Malika Zarra. He recently also toured and played with the New York Gypsy All-Stars featuring clarinet virtuoso Ismail Lumanovski. Having performed in 13 countries, from China to Brazil, Europe to North America, Manu has emerged as a veritable ambassador of groove, preaching his global gospel across borders, holding firmly to the dream that music can unite through sound and movement.

George Mel
George Mel has worked as a freelance drummer and percussionist in New York City since late 2000. While in New York, he has performed at such landmark venues as Carnegie Hall; Blue Note; Irridium; The Kitano; Zinc Bar; 55Bar; The Bitter End; Smalls; Smoke; Jazz Standard; as well as The Deer Head Inn and World Cafe Live, PA; among others. Over the years George has performed both in the USA and Internationally with such a diverse group of world-class artists as Duane Eubanks, Bob Rodriguez, Mark Helias, Leni Stern, Essiet Essiet, Valeri Ponomarev, Avishai E.Cohen (trumpet), Emilio Solla, Gabriel Grossi, John Ellis, Raul Midon, Wayne Escoffery, Freddie Bryant, Edsel Gomez, Nilson Matta, Lionel Loueke, Craig Handy, Badal Roy (tablas w/Miles Davis), Sergio Brandao, jazz clarinet legend Perry Robinson, Brazilian piano legend Dom Salvador and countless other musicians from all-over the world.

Born George ‘Gia’ Melikishvili in Tbilisi, Georgia, George received his first formal musical education after being offered a scholarship to the famed Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. He became the first Georgian-born musician to graduate with a degree in Jazz Performance in the United States. After graduation, the American Federation Of Musicians and the US Government unconditionally granted George Mel the highly prestigious “Extraordinary Abilities in The Arts” status of permanent residency in the United States in 2007.

George released his first album as a leader and composer with 2004's “Winding Road” and followed up with 2010’s “Streams of Consciousness,” both of which reflect George’s deeply personal view that music should exist as a human expression of beauty and emotion through sound, rather than simply serving market-defined labels and conventional definitions and Jazz in particular, as an improvisation and interplay that requires an open mind from both the artist and the listener.

Apostolos Sideris
Apostolos Sideris was born in 1978 in Athens, Greece, where he had his first musical training, playing the classical flute. By the time he was 15 he had switched to the electric bass, after his older brother's influence, who was already playing the electric guitar. It didnt take long for him to fall in love with the instrument ,and he was soon playing with various rock bands around Athens. By the time he was 18, his focus was directed towards Jazz music, something that lead him make the move and go to Boston, in order to attend Berklee. During his time at Berklee, he picked up the upright bass and since then it s been his main instrument. Following his stint in Boston, Apostolos moved to New York and earned his Master's degree in Performance, while being instructed by bass virtuoso, John Patitucci. Since then he has been freelancing and working around the States as well as abroad. He has performed with a wide array of musicians ranging from jazz masters such as drummer Clarence Penn to world music sensation and ECM recording artist Savina Yannatou and Syrian vocalist Youssef Khasab, right here at Alwan. In addition to being a performer, he is a composer whose influences range from Jazz and Latin to the sounds of his native Greece and the Middle East.


Alwan's music program is made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in Partnership with the City Council.

Last updated: 2014-01-06 14:30:58

The Other Point of View
The Other Point of View

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