Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Multiculti Saturday 3: Ensemble Mik Noowoj at Yerba Buena Gardens

The downtown oasis of Yerba Buena Gardens hosts a free summer performance series from May through October where the scattershot programming ranges from poetry readings to musical performances to staged plays. The audiences tend to be small but the quality of performers in my experience has been remarkably high.

Saturday afternoon's "Hip Hop Orchestra" Ensemble Mik Nawooj was a perfect example.

Started by composer/pianist JooWan Kim in 2010 after receiving a graduate degree from the SF Conservatory of Music, the musical ensemble consists of "MCs/lyricists Do D.A.T. and Sandman, a lyric soprano, flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, drums and bass," according to their website. I believe Sandman is the rapper pictured above and below.

They were performing an ambitious oratorio composed by Kim, Death Becomes Life, which featured an augmented chamber orchestra and artwork by Ernest Doty.

It was an oddly interesting mixture of hip hop and classical music styles, including the rapper Do D.A.T. and an operatic soprano above.

To top if off, there was also "interpretative" dancing by TURFinc.

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