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After the performance I asked Zimbalista how he created the melodic effect of layers of non-pitch textures. He observed; 'The four drums all have their own pitch, I invent a "melody" while I play them. And the woodblocks -- are nearly in pitch; and in the tambourine you get all the different inflections (he taps on a note with his fingers). There is always a melody -- it is never straight note repetition. So it sings! I always sing the parts.'

As a spontaneous choice to mark the cellist's birthday, Chen Zimbalista took up the tambourine and performed an astonishing, brilliant piece, with amazing polyrhythmic layering and dynamics. The concert concluded with a cool, jazzy Latin American number, resonant and vibrant for the whole ensemble.

Following its concert on 8 December 2001 in Tel-Aviv, the Chen Zimbalista-Con Tempo collaboration continues with appearances in London in February and April 2002. Meanwhile Chen Zimbalista's dazzling percussion playing is available to enjoy on his CD Desert Beat (Koch Discover International 920494, 1996).

'Desert Beat' CD cover © Koch International


Copyright © 30 January 2002 Malcolm Miller, London, UK






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