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Melbourne Assembly Rooms

Postcode: DE73 8GF

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Roma Tales

Show Details

Presented by Faith i Branko

Performance date and time
Thursday, 21st November 2019
7:30 PM

Married Anglo-Serbian duo Faith and Branko Ristic form the core of this high-energy international quartet, their colourful fusion style taking the audience on a journey from elegant Balkan Romani laments to exuberant old folk-dance 'kolos', and explorations into jazz improvisation and swing. The resultant set is joyous, passionate, fiery and virtuosic. Beyond talented, Branko, predicted by fRoots Magazine to become 'one of the leading Roma violinists of the century', soars at break-neck pace whilst Faith's 'nimble accordion accompaniment provides a beautiful bedrock' (The Guardian). And with a fascinating stage presence, good humour and easy rapport this is a 'totally amazing' (Lily Allen, BBC Three) showcase for this super-fiddler. _________________________________________________________________

Faith Ristic: accordian, vocals Brank Ristic: violin Pouya Mahmoodi: guitar, vocals Mari Lon: dance

She is an English rose, accordionist and circus performer from a Cotswold hamlet. He is a virtuoso Roma violinist from a West Serbian village. Weaving together an exciting mix of instruments - from the accordion and violin to the tabor pipe and double bass - Faith i Branko take you on a journey from melancholy Roma violin laments to storming 'kolos' folk-dance and explorations into jazz improvisation, swing, Gypsy Rumba and Turkish and Indian influenced songs. Faith was an accordion player and pianist working in Giffords Circus when she decided to travel to the Balkans to search out a Gypsy violinist to join the circus band. There she met Branko, a self-taught virtuosic Roma violinist and 'a performer that Paganini would be proud of' (BBC Radio 3), in his Serbian Roma village. With music as their only tool for communication they began a journey that would lead to the creation of their award-winning debut album 'Gypsy Lover', their marriage and their successful international touring. Musically, they are a delight, drawing from both of their musical heritages, with Branko switching from inspired Balkan Romani styles to ragtime, classical influences and jazz, with Faith adding tight accordion backing, moving solos and pleasant, easy-going vocals. Branko opens his heart in their slower compositions, revealing at times the sadness and darkness beneath the frantic virtuosic revelry. For this current tour, Faith and Branko are joined by Iranian guitarist and singer Pouya Mahmoodi, and dancer Mari Lon, who offers an insight into the techniques and delights of Balkan dance. More than just a musical performance, Faith i Branko tell the spellbinding stories behind songs steeped in Roma, Serbian, Iranian and UK musical culture, sharing their personal travel tales and intimate knowledge of these cultures.

'Quite remarkable musicians.' Stephen Fry, BBC World Service 'Musically a delight... these virtuosic performers are a major discovery.' The Guardian

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Performer's website

Running time
90 min + interval

Audience Type

Age Range

Ticket Prices
£10.00 Standard / £8.00 Student

Other Ticket Information
Doors open 7pm. Free parking. Bar open.

Main Box Office Telephone Number
01332 863522

Available From
Call 01332 863 522; at Melbourne Assembly Rooms, High Street, Melbourne DE73 8FG or at Forteys in Melbourne Market Place; online at ticketsource.

Additional Information
Doors open at 7pm. Bar open before, after and during interval.

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Venue's website

Venue Accessibility (See Key for more information)

Live & Local affirms that when a disabled person’s access requirements necessitate them being accompanied to a performance, that person and their personal assistant should be able to purchase two tickets at a total cost of no more than the cost of a one full-priced ticket. Promoters are advised that this is best practice that is now supported by an established legal precedent.

Reservable/general parking on site Designated parking Level entrance Wheelchair accessible toilet Induction Loop

This performance is supported by:

Arts Council, England

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South Derbyshire District Council Logo