Sara is warming up on a Sunday morning on her brand new Fox 660 in the other room, the sun is shining through all the windows, and all seems right in the world. She's writing a nine-bassoon composition involving a lot of pedals, microtones, multiphonics, long tones, and spatial sound ... now that I want to hear!
Caught up with close friend conductor/composer/guitarist/cellist/educator/renaissance man Omid Zoufonoun last night on the phone. He conducts my Ahimsa Orchestra. He was telling me about the recent worksop/presentation that Lawrence D. Butch Morris gave in the Bay Area and the nice interactions he had with Butch after the fact. I was so psyched to hear that Omid, a Vienna-trained conductor, had finally got a chance to check out Butch. I know he'd wanted to for a long time, and I think this was the first time in a long while that Butch had been brought out to the Bay Area. Bravo ROVA for continually-adventurous programming: ROVA: Improv21
Omid was also telling me about the concert and celebration given in honor of his father Ostad Mahmoud Zoufonoun, master violinist/composer/arranger/educator of traditional Persian music. Omid has always been very humble about his father, a man who, at 86, still has incredible energy for sharing his passionate and extensive mastery of traditional Persian music with students of all ages. I've met him only once, at an Ahimsa Orchestra concert we gave last year in Oakland. I was touched by his gentleness andwarm spirit. Even just in meeting him and exchanging a few words of thanks that he and Omid's mom had come to our concert, I had the sense that this was a great man, someone who had lived an immense amount of life and exuded a great sense of calm and wisdom. Omid told me that among many official proclamations made at the concert honoring his father, Gavin Newsome, mayor of San Francisco, proclaimed January 20 Mahmoud Zoufonoun day in San Francisco. Now that is hip!
On the topic of proclamations, concert tonight at Tonic with Jason Ajemian's large ensemble. Jason is a completely unique bassist/composer/vocalist from Chicago who belts it out on top of his multi-layered compositions like a town crier. Should be fun.