On Monday, Nov. 20, Binghamton University’s Anderson Center for the Performing Arts welcomes experimental Ukrainian world music quartet DakhaBrakha.
Born out of Kyiv’s avant-garde theater community, DakhaBrakha (which translates roughly to “give and take” in old Ukrainian) has been performing a mashup of traditional Ukrainian folk songs and world rhythms since 2004. Accompanied by Indian, Arabic, African and Ukrainian traditional instrumentation, the group’s astonishingly powerful and uncompromising vocal range creates a trans-national sound rooted in Ukrainian culture.
NPR says “the group mixes everything from punk-pop to traditional Ukrainian songs in cool yet beguiling textures, often with the close harmonies usually associated with Balkan music. But it’s really the live shows that take DakhaBrakha beyond mere curiosity to utter brilliance.”
DakhaBrakha shows are staged with a strong visual element, including dramatic, vibrant folk garb and original projection art interspersed with unsettling video footage of a homeland ravaged by the ongoing war with Russia, which the quartet began incorporating after Russia’s invasion of Crimea in 2014. As the conflict has intensified in recent years, the band has grown from an unlikely cultural export into international ambassadors of the Ukrainian resistance.
IF YOU GO: DakhaBrakha will perform at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20 in the Anderson Center’s Osterhout Concert Theater. Tickets for the general public range from $25 to $60, with a 10% discount on premium seats for seniors, veterans and Binghamton University faculty/staff and alumni. Student and child tickets cost just $10 for any seat in the house. Visit the Anderson Center box office, go online at anderson.binghamton.edu or call 607-777-ARTS.