7th June 2019
Catrin Finch & Seckou Keita
Price: ££20/ £10 under 18's + students
Welsh harpist Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita continue their celebration and exploration of the remarkable affinities between the Welsh harp and the West African kora.
First introduced in March 2012, this opportune meeting of musical talents has produced a collaboration of great potency and depth, and after over 100 concerts worldwide, their artistic compatibility shows no sign of abating.
Impossible to pigeon-hole, their sublime music blurs the boundaries between world music, classical, folk and traditional genres, leaping over cultural barriers and roaming in borderless musical territory.
Following unanimous critical raves for their 2013 debut Clychau Dibon , classically-trained Welsh harpist Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora maestro Seckou Keita delivered a triumphant second album with 2018’s album SOAR , again charting inspirational common ground between seemingly disparate traditions. Thematically inspired by the osprey – the magnificent raptor recently returned to Wales after its persecution to near extinction 400 years ago – and its annual migrations between Europe and Africa, the album’s intoxicating, often improvised synergy captures a magical meeting of minds and talents within a borderless musical landscape.
Themes of migration – natural, enforced and economic – run throughout SOAR , drawing deep on the sometimes darker history of these two great musical nations. “Like the iconic raptor, it swoops and soars to capture the bird’s very essence,” says Dave Haslam, in his 5* review for RnR Magazine, “ SOAR is as near to perfection as it is possible”.
Their performances of the album in spring 2018 garnered 5* reviews from both the Guardian and The London Evening Standard and prompted Songlines Magazine’s Tim Cumming to de-scribe them as “…one of the most popular world music acts of the decade”. SOAR went on to win the prestigious fRoots Critics Poll Album of The Year 2018, an award Catrin and Seckou received previously for Clychau Dibon in 2013. The album also received a nomination for the Welsh Music Prize, and has been named as one of MOJO and Songlines Magazines Top Ten Albums of the Year 2018.
Catrin & Seckou have this year scored the theme music for BBC Radio 4 podcast The Ratline with Philippe Sands, Stephen Fry and Laura Linney, broadcast in October 2018 which has now become one of BBC R4’s most successful podcasts ever, with 1.45 million listeners in October alone.
Take a listen to the podcast featuring their breathtaking music here.
A Theatre Mwldan Production
‘Clarach’ – Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita