The Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra
in collaboration with Caravan World Rhythms
proudly presents

The Longing Sky Project

Encounter: Sarangi Meets Shakuhachi
November 18, 2013 at 8 pm
The Orpheum Annex Theatre
823 Seymour St., Vancouver (2nd floor)
Ticket prices & box office information here

Four virtuoso musicians. An intimate performance space. Centuries of musical tradition. Dhruba Ghosh (sarangi) and Harrie Starreveld (shakuhachi) explore the ragas and modes of Indian, Japanese and Persian music, with Reza Honari (kamanche) and Niel Golden (tabla).

Music of the Whole World: Reaching for the Sky
November 20, 2013 at 7:00 pm
Vancouver Public Library Central Branch
350 Georgia St., Vancouver
Free admission

How would *you* go about writing a double concerto for sarangi, shakuhachi and intercultural orchestra? Find out how composer Moshe Denburg did it, and hear a sneak preview of his new work,The Longing Sky, in this informal show-and-tell demonstration.

The Longing Sky: VICO with Dhruba Ghosh & Harrie Starreveld
November 22, 2013 at 8:00 pm
The Rothstein Theatre
950 West 41st Ave., Vancouver
Ticket prices & box office information here

The 21-piece VICO, with Dhruba Ghosh and Harrie Starreveld, performs the world premiere of The Longing Sky, a double concerto by Moshe Denburg for solo sarangi and shakuhachi with intercultural orchestra (violin, viola, cello, bass, gaohu, erhu, zhonghu, kamanche, tar, santur, ruan/daruan, tabla, tambura and hand percussion). Also on the bill: the Canadian premiere of Peony Dreams by Lan Tung, and an arrangement of George Harrison’s Within You and Without You by Mark Armanini.

Dhruba Ghosh in Concert
November 23, 2013 at 8 pm
Vancouver Community College Auditorium
1155 East Broadway St., Vancouver
Ticket prices & box office information here

Renowned sarangi (North Indian bowed string) virtuoso Dhruba Ghosh will give a solo recital of traditional ragas, accompanied by VICO tabla master Niel Golden. This is a rare opportunity to hear classical Indian music delivered by one of the world’s foremost performers on the sarangi.

The Vancouver Inter-Cultural acknowledges the support of the following funders, sponsors and partners, without whom The Longing Sky would not be possible:

The Canada Council for the Arts
BC Arts Council
The Province of British Columbia (Community Gaming)
The City of Vancouver
ArtsVest Vancouver (Business for the Arts)
The SOCAN Foundation
OMNI Diversity Television
Vancouver Community College

Sounds Global: VICO in the Schools

November 3, 2013 at 7 pm
Capilano University Centre for Performing Arts
North Vancouver, BC
Admission by donation (suggested: $15)

VICO musicians Lan Tung (erhu), Ali Razmy (tar), Sina Ettehad (kamanche), Farshid Samandari (bass) and Jonathan Bernard(percussion) will perform new works developed by student composers through the “VICO in the Schools: Intercultural Music Making in Contemporary Society” workshop series held at Capilano University earlier this year. This innovative educational program offers participants a rare hands-on opportunity to learn about the art of composing intercultural music, by working with VICO musicians who are practitioners of a variety of world music traditions. Launched by the VICO in 2009, “VICO in the Schools” has since been offered yearly at various institutions including Seycove Secondary School and the University of British Columbia.

Featured student composersPeter VeidnerHarrison KuettelZac Goerlitz & others

Also on the bill: music by Lan TungFarshid Samandari & Mark Armanini.


September 28, 2013 at 1:15pm
The ACT Arts Centre & Theatre
11944 Haney Place,
Maple Ridge, BC

The VICO Small Ensemble will be participating in Culture Days Across Canada through this performance in Maple Ridge. Visit the Culture Days website for more information on this nation-wide celebration of culture and diversity!


In support of the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra

Sunday June 16, 2013
4 to 8 pm *Dinner & entertainment begins at 4:30 pm

Moberly Arts & Cultural Centre
7646 Prince Albert St., Vancouver (see map & details here)

Looking for an unusual and inspiring Father’s Day celebration? Why not broaden your horizons and support a worthy local arts organization in one fell swoop? Savour a 4-course, interculturally-inspired meal accompanied by beautiful music from many different cultures.

*Hosted by VICO’s founding artistic director Moshe Denburg
*Catering by Roaming Dragon (see a sneak preview of the menu here!)
*Entertainment by VICO small ensembles (see a list of featured musicians here)
*Silent auction
*Door prizes
*Cash bar
*Free hugs!
*Gift of a VICO CD to every father in attendance

Tickets: $50 for adults (a tax receipt for $35 will be issued upon arrival at the venue) or $25 for children/youth aged 8-18 (children under 8 may attend for free) available online here.

**NOTE: if you would like to support the VICO through this event, but are unable to attend, you can sponsor a ticket for someone else, and receive a tax receipt for the full value of the ticket (or tickets). Just make a donation of $50 (or more if you want sponsor more than one ticket) via the VICO’s CanadaHelps page, and specify that it’s for Flavour Fling. You can give us the name of the person you’d like to pass on the ticket to, or we would be happy to offer it to a deserving guest of our choosing. A tax receipt will be e-mailed to you right away.

For additional information, please e-mail


A Festival Celebrating Japanese Music in Canada

May 7-19, 2013: various venues in Vancouver, Burnaby & Victoria

Festival Events:

**Download the brochure in PDF format here (file size 2 MB), and a Japanese translation of the festival media release here (file size 640 KB).

Music of the Whole World: Chrysanthemums & Maple Leaves
Tuesday May 7, 2013 at 7 pm
Vancouver Public Library Central Branch
350 West Georgia St (Lower Level)
Alice MacKay Room
Admission is FREE; seating is limitedIn this sneak preview of the VICO’s upcoming concert (May 18th at the Roundhouse), Kozue Matsumoto (koto), Minoru Yamamoto (shakuhachi) and composer Mark Armanini offer a fascinating introduction to traditional Japanese instruments, and the art of fusing different musical traditions into new Canadian music. Also featured: the work of guest artist Naomi Sato (sho), and a live performance of a piece by Elliot Weisgarber, combining koto with erhu (played by Song Yun) and sanxian (Geling Jiang).****
Sho Tunes with Naomi Sato
Thursday May 9, 2013 at 2:30 pm
Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre – Intergenerational Room
6688 Southoaks Crescent, Burnaby
Admission is FREE; seating is limitedVisiting guest artist Naomi Sato, a virtuoso sho (Japanese mouth organ) player, will give a lecture-performance introducing her instrument and its place in traditional Japanese music, as well as its potential for contemporary composition and cross-cultural collaborations.*****
The Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra and Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre present
Noh/Sho Meets Canada
with special guest Tsunao Yamai 
Sunday May 12, 2013 at 7:00 pm
Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre – Main Hall
6688 Southoaks Crescent, Burnaby
Tickets $15 ($10 for students & seniors) available via

A quartet comprised of Naomi Sato (sho), Kozue Matsumoto (koto), Yuriko Nariya (koto) and Minoru Yamamoto(shakuhachi) will present a concert of traditional Japanese music and contemporary Japanese/Canadian compositions.At this event the VICO is also honoured to host world-renowned Noh performer Tsunao Yamai, who will be appearing in Vancouver as part of his “Noh Meets Canada” tour (produced by the Consulate-General of Japan in Vancouver with support from the Agency of Cultural
Affairs, Government of Japan). This is a rare opportunity to see an intimate performance by one of the most respected players and leaders of this ancient and profound form of theatrical expression.

Naomi Sato & Farshid Samandari:
Lecture-performances in Vancouver & VIctoria
Wednesday May 15, 2013 at 7:00 pm
Canadian Music Centre
837 Davie St., Vancouver

Sunday May 19, 2013 at 2:00 pm
Open Space Arts Society
510 Fort St. #2, Victoria

Admission is free; seating is limited

In these educational events targeted at professional musicians and composers, Naomi Sato (sho) will introduce her instrument, the sho (Japanese mouth organ), rarely seen in Vancouver. Local composer Farshid Samandari will offer insight into his own experience of writing a new work for show and electronics.

Chrysanthemums & Maple Leaves: VICO in Concert with Naomi Sato

Saturday May 18, 2013 at 8:00 pm
The Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre
181 Roundhouse Mews (Pacific at Davie St.)
Tickets $25 ($15 for students & seniors) available via the culminating event of the “Chrysanthemums & Maple Leaves” mini-festival, virtuoso sho (Japanese mouth organ) player Naomi Sato will join the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra to perform new works by contemporary Canadian and Japanese composers, including Minoru MikiArata KobayashiMark Armanini,Stefan Maier and Farshid Samandari. With Western strings, erhu, koto, shakuhachi, sho, flute, clarinet and percussion all sharing the stage, this is world music like you’ve never heard it before – a ground-breaking fusion of tradition and innovation.

PARTNER EVENT: The “Noh Meets Canada” Tour
Featuring Tsunao Yamai

Tsunao Yamai, a lead player of the Komparu School, along with an ensemble, will present a talk and a short performance of the elegant and refined traditional art of noh theatre of Japan.  The talk will explain the movements, the masks, and costumes of the noh world.  This is a rare opportunity to learn first-hand from one of the most respected players and leaders of an ancient and profound form of theatrical expression.

May 9, 2013 at 7:30 pm

Metro Studio Theatre
1411 Quadra St., Victoria
Admission is free

May 11, 2013 at 1:30 pm
Vancouver Japanese Language School & Japanese Hall
46 Alexander St., Vancouver
Admission is Free

The Noh Meets Canada tour is organized and produced by the Consulate General of Japan in Vancouver; please for more information.

The VICO gratefully acknowledges the support of the following funders and sponsors, without whom CHRYSANTHEMUMS & MAPLE LEAVES would not be possible:

VICO in the Schools: Elementary School Edition

April 9, 2013 at 10:00 am
Moberly Arts & Cultural Centre
7646 Prince Albert St, Vancouver

The Vancouver Intercultural Orchestra and the Moberly Arts & Cultural Centre invites you to an intercultural musical workshop.  Join the Iranian-Celtic/Canadian Duo of Amy Stephen (Singer, Celtic Harp, Accordion, Tin Whistle) and Amir Haghighi (Iranian Tenor, Iranian Percussion) on a musical exploration of song and sound.  Appropriate for grades 3-7.

VICO IN THE SCHOOLS: Capilano University Edition 2013

Intercultural Music Making in Contemporary Society

Paging visionary student composers! The VICO is pleased to be offering a workshop series atCapilano University through February-April 2013, offering participants a rare hands-on opportunity to learn about the art of composing intercultural music, by working with VICO musicians who are practitioners of a variety of world music traditions. This innovative educational program, launched by the VICO in 2009, has since been offered yearly at various institutions including Seycove Secondary School and the University of British Columbia.

Mark Armanini & Farshid Samandari, composers
Lan Tung, erhu  |  Sina Ettehad, kamanche  |  Ali Razmi, tar  |  Jonathan Bernard, percussion

Session #1: Introductions
February 2, 2013 at 2 pm
Capilano University Music Dept., FR113 (2055 Purcell Way, North Vancouver)

Workshop leaders Mark Armanini and Farshid Samandari and the VICO musicians listed above will introduce students to a selection of world instruments, providing an overview of the musical traditions with which they are associated. Artists and students will discuss the specific challenges and techniques associated with composing intercultural music that truly reflects the diversity of the communities in which we live, on the North Shore and throughout the Lower Mainland. The workshop leaders will present some of the practical strategies and solutions that the VICO has tried and tested in creating this type of music. Students will be encouraged to go away and compose small ensemble pieces for the instruments in question

Session #2: Workshop with composers Mark Armanini and Farshid Samandari
Session #3: Rehearsal/reading of new works-in-progress with VICO musicians & composers
These sessions will take place in February and March 2013, and will not be open to the public. Participants’ new compositions will be read/performed in a workshop format by the VICO musicians, who will provide constructive critique. Students will learn from hearing critiques of others’ work in addition to their own, and from the ensuing discussion of how to address the feedback effectively.

Session #4: Public performance
April 2013 – date, time & venue TBA
Capilano University Music Dept., FR113 (2055 Purcell Way, North Vancouver)
The revised student compositions will receive their public premiere, performed by the VICO musicians.

Note to potential participants: previous experience with intercultural music or non-Western instruments is not required; the program is designed to be accessible to students who are new to this type of composition, and/or to the instruments involved. For more information, please e-mail


We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the City of North Vancouver and the District of North Vancouver through the North Vancouver Arts Office.

Music of the Whole World: Strings Without Borders

Wednesday February 6, 2013 at 7:00 pm

Vancouver Public Library Central Branch
350 Georgia St.
Alice MacKay Hall
Free Admission

Chinese erhu, Persian kemanche, Baroque viola and tenor viol: how would you go about composing for such a diverse selection of instruments? Join composers and musicians and musicians of theVancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra for a behind-the-scenes look at the fascinating challenges of creating and performing intercultural music for world strings…music that brings together instruments and musical traditions that span not only continents, but centuries. Live musical demonstrations provided!
With Mark Armanini, Moshe Denburg & Christina Oorebeek, composers
and Sina Ettehad (kamanche), Paul Luchkow (Baroque violin & viola) and Jun Rong (erhu)

War, Love & Loss:

Music for voice, Western strings & world instruments
by Christina Oorebeek, Mark Armanini, Moshe Denburg & Farshid Samandari

Monday February 11, 2013 at 7:30 pm
Norman Rothstein Theatre (950 W 41st Ave., Vancouver)

The VICO looks forward to sharing the stage for the first time with Pacific Baroque Orchestra (PBO) on February 11, at Vancouver’s Chutzpah! Festival. In this ground-breaking collaboration, mezzo-soprano Melanie Adams and tenors Joey Bulman and Shane Raman – accompanied by baroque violins and violas, cello, viola da gamba, recorder, erhu, kamanche, barbat, dizi, zheng, and percussion – will perform world premieres of new works by Canadian composers Farshid Samandari, Mark Armanini, and Moshe Denburg, as well as Dutch composer Christina Oorebeek.

War, Love and Loss forms a cycle which moves from Oorebeek’s settings of the ancient Chinese book36 Strategies (militaristic tactics), to Armanini’s composition based on Chinese poetry from the Tang dynasty (which deals with connectedness and family), to Samandari’s and Denburg’s treatments of Farsi poetry and traditional Ladino and Hebrew songs concerning love and loss. It is a journey in time – moving from ancient texts and narratives to more modern sensibilities, highlighting contemporary composers writing new intercultural works on period instruments, and shedding light on the musical traditions of Canada’s many cultures.

Tickets available NOW at Tickets Tonight: purchase online or call 604-257-5145.