VICO: Planetful of Sound

vico-chan-poster3The Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra presents


March 14, 2009 at 7:30 pm

Chan Centre for the Performing Arts – Telus Studio Theatre

Tickets $20/$10 at Ticketmaster

604-280-3311 or

The Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra presents sounds of China, the Middle East, India and the West, in works by Vancouver composers Mark Armanini, Moshe Denburg, Lan Tung, Jin Zhang and special guest composer Joel Bons (artistic director of Amsterdam’s Atlas Ensemble): music that transcends cultural boundaries, performed on instruments from all over the world. For the first time ever at a VICO concert, the performance will include large-screen video, giving audiences an up-close view of the musicians and their instruments in action.

The VICO is currently the only professional orchestral ensemble in BC (possibly in Canada) devoted to performing inter-cultural music on a grand scale. Planetful of Sound offers VICO musicians and composers an exciting opportunity to connect with Joel Bons, who has been breaking similar ground in Europe with his acclaimed contemporary music group Nieuw Ensemble and the Atlas Ensemble. The latter is described (very similarly to the VICO) as “a unique chamber orchestra uniting brilliant musicians from China, Central Asia, the Near East and Europe, presenting an unheard soundworld of western and non-western instruments.” Like the VICO, the Atlas Ensemble’s repertoire consists almost entirely of specially commissioned works, by such composers as Guo Wenjing, Jia Daqun, Faradj Karajev, Fabio Nieder, Theo Loevendie , Frangiz Ali-Zade, Bun-Ching Lam, Jack Body, Stefano Bellon, Artjom Kim, Javanshir Guliev and Evrim Demirel. (

Planetful of Sound will feature the North American premiere of Joel Bons’ piece Tour à Tour as well as Floating on the Sea of Serenity (Armanini), Little Suite for Erhu and Harp (Zhang), Market Place, Chapter 1: China (Tung) and Camel Hop at the Caravanserai (Denburg), performed by a 22-member ensemble that includes zheng, sanxian,  santur, oud, dizi, bansuri, sheng, suona, flute, oboe, clarinet, marimba, Celtic harp, percussion and Western strings. The programme will also feature a solo by visiting Taiwanese musician Janelle Yichen on satar (Uighur fiddle from northwestern China).

In the VICO, Western-trained orchestral musicians rub shoulders with performers in musical traditions from all over the world…shedding light on the musical traditions of Canada’s many cultures and the myriad bridges between them. For more information on the ensemble and its upcoming events, please visit

Planetful of Sound was made possible through the generous assistance of the Chan Endowment Fund of the University of British Columbia.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s