The Silk and Steel Project 2001-2002

2002 Summer Tour schedule of the Silk and steel Ensemble

July 6-7: Halifax Jazz Festival
July 6: Main Stage (with Toronto Tabla) / Start: 20:00, set1 - finish: 23:00, sound check: 18:30
July7:  Creative music workshop / Sarts: 11:00 - finish: 13:30
July7: Concert: Starts: 17:00 - Finish: 18:30, sound check: 15:30
Quebec city
July 8-11: Quebec International Summer Festival

   7/8/02   18h00   Place Metro 
   7/9/02   14h00   Place Metro
   7/10/02   12h00   Place Metro 
   7/11/02   12h00   Place Metro
July 12-14: Winnipeg Folk Music Festival
July 12 / 4:00-4:30 Silk and Steel (concert)
July 13 / 12:15-1:15 Ragas to Riches (Debashish & Subhasis)
        13 / 2:45-4:00  All the world's Stage (Liu Fang)
July 14: / 2:45-4:00 Silk and Steel (concert)
July 19-21: Vancouver Folk Music Festival

EVENING CONCERTS (Main stage) with the Silk and Steel Ensemble: SATURDAY


  • Saturday July 20, 2002
    • 10:00 - Julian Kytasty, stage 5
    • 11:15 - Liu Fang, stage 7
    • 12:30 - Debashish and Subhasis Bhattacharya, stage 2
    • 4:15pm - Silk and Steel, Evening concert, Stage 2
  • Sunday July 21, 2002
    • 11:15 - Debashish Bhattacharya , stage 5
    • 1:45 - Silk and Steel, Stage 5
    • 4:15pm - Liu Fang and S.Bhattacharya, stage 2

July 26-28:: Calgary Folk Music Festival
Sat or Sun side stage concert, Sat & Sun workshops

The Silk and Steel Ensemble

The Silk and Steel Ensemble consists of four internationally-acclaimed musicians - Debashish Bhattacharya (Hindustani Slide Guitar), Liu Fang (Chinese Pipa and Guzheng), Julian Kytasty (Bandura), Subhashish Bhattacharya (Tabla). The musical issue will be blending of three very different musical traditions: the Indian, the Chinese, the Caucasian European sacred and folk music. Each has its specific if not a very singular musical notation, rhythmic, melodic harmony structures and patterns ?a tremendous challenge for a non-academic audience.

Over 90 minutes of original music will be produced and performed for the first time during the 2002 Canadian Folk Music Festival summer tour. The artists are targeting a general audience, with snippets of jazz, world, bluegrass and new music aficionados. This is the East-meets-West musical conversations aimed at Western-European and North-American roots and popular music listeners. Each artist has definitely proven throughout their musical career at this point that they understand different musical genres.

Each artist has also experienced per se the Canadian way of exposing and promoting their craft though concerts, workshops and master classes as well as informal sessions for non-professional musicians and music fans.

Profiles of artists

Debashish Bhattacharya

Internationally acclaimed as one of the world’s most amazing guitarist, Debashish Bhattacharya, a prodigy, mastered over Indian Classical Music, techniques of instrumental styles in particular, in his early age. Being a disciple of Pandit Brijbhusan Kabra, the father and founder of Indian Classical Guitar, Debashish has also become the disciple of Pandit Ajoy Chakraborty, the celebrated vocalist of our time, of Patiala School. Moreover, Debashish had the privilege to have talim and guidance from Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, the great.

A President of India medal winner Debashish, had achieved a unique style of his own of playing guitar by synthesizing selected features of Indian Veena, Sarode, Sitar and Arabian Kannun with classical elegance and traditional sensitivity. After a long research on his instrument, Debashish invented a new instrument of twentyfour stringed guitar, introduced worldwide as "Hindusthani Slide guitar". With his instrument and musical, calibre, Debashish has become a very popular performer of class and entertainer as well, in India and abroad.

He had extensively toured U.S.A., Canada, U.K., Japan and even in Hawaii, the land and origin of guitar, as the first Indian.

Debashish participated in "Historical collaboration of the East and West in the world of slide guitar" with Bob Brozman and Martin Simpson. Apart from memorable concerts, Debashish has the credit of cut number of albums, making the title music for Hollywood movie "Life during war time", playing music for space education programme of NASA, etc.

Liu Fang

Montreal resident Liu Fang has achieved an international reputation for her masterful and deeply spirited pipa playing. Born in 1974 in Kunming in the Chinese province of Yunnan, Liu Fang began studying the pipa at the age of six and gave her first public performance as a pipa soloist when she was nine. In 1985, she played for Queen Elizabeth during Her Majesty’s visit to China. Honoured with several provincial and national prizes, Liu Fang graduated from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, where she also studied the guzheng, a Chinese zither. Since moving to Canada in 1996, Liu Fang has built a remarkable artistic profile by captivating audiences and critics with the richness and grace of her playing as well as wide ranging repertoire.

Among the numerous solo recitals, concerto performances and concerts at festivals throughout Canada, the U.S., Europe and South America, Liu Fang has premiered new compositions by the celebrated Canadian composers R.Murray Schafer and Melissa Hui. In fact, most recently she has appeared in the spectacular world premier of R.Murray Schafer’s musical drama The Palace of the Cinnibar Phoenix, playing outstanding solos on both the pipa and the guzheng. She has also collaborated with traditional master musicians from India, Japan, Syria and Vietnam. She performed pipa concerti with the Moravia Symphony Orchestra in Prague (1999) and recently with the renowned Nouvel Ensemble Moderne and the SMCQ in Montreal, the Alcan string quartet in Quebec and the Quartetto Paul Klee Venezia in Italy. Liu Fang has also made numerous national and international radio recordings and television appearances, given performances recorded for films, and released four CDs.

Liu Fang has been awarded several grants by the Canada Council for the Arts. On June 5th, 2001, she received the prestigious Future Generations Millennium Prize from the council. In the jury's words: "Liu Fang's mastery of the pipa and the guzheng has established her international reputation as a highly talented young interpreter of traditional Chinese music. She aspires to combine her knowledge and practice of eastern traditions with western classical music, contemporary music and improvisation, thereby creating new musical forms, uniting different cultures and discovering new audiences."

Julian Kytasty

JULIAN KYTASTY was born in Detroit. He first learned his art there as a member of the Ukrainian Bandurist Chorus, in which his father and grandfather both played before him. In 1980 he moved to New York to become Artistic Director of the New York Bandura Ensemble and began a career as a solo artist and bandura teacher that has taken him all over the globe. In 1989 Mr. Kytasty was one of the first Ukrainian-American artists to be invited to tour in Ukraine, performing over a hundred concerts as a soloist and with a bandura trio. His concerts and recordings have gained Mr. Kytasty a reputation as an artist for whom the tradition he has mastered is not a museum piece, but a basis for a living art, created anew at every performance and capable of accommodating a range of contemporary influences without losing its authenticity.

Julian Kytasty holds a degree in Music (Theory and Composition) from Concordia University in Montreal. His arrangements and original compositions have entered the repertoire of bandurists around the world. He has also created music for instrumental groups, choirs, and for dance performances, as well as theater music for New York's Yara Arts Group. He speaks frequently on the bandura and its tradition and has been a guest lecturer at many universities including Yale, Harvard, Wesleyan, and the University of California. Recent projects include two recordings, Variances and Prairie Nights and Peacock Feathers with Canadian singer Alexis Kochan and their ensemble Paris to Kyiv, and a new CD with his own group the Experimental Bandura Trio.

Subhashish Bhattacharya

A promising tabla player, Subhashish Bhattacharya, was trained by the eminent tabla artists like Pandit Shyamal Bose, Pandit Anindo Chatterjee, Samir Chatterjee and Prabir Bhattacharya and achieved mastery over the rythmic instrument in his early days. His skill as well as sense of aesthetics, blended with improvising calibre has made Subhashish a prominent tabla player of his generation.

Subhashish has performed extensively in India and Overseas, with master of music like Pandit Ajoy Chakraborty, Debashish Bhattacharya, Bob Brozman and has achieved tremendous applause.

back / retour

[HOME] [booking]