Graham Reid | | 2 min read
The grand patriarch of the Aleav Family out of Tajikistan, Allo Alaev, here answers a fast 15 questions which gives a little insight into how world music artists coming to Womad later this month come from a very different musical background.
No X-Factor or Idol competitions for these people, no glossy magazine photoshoot on the basis of one hit single. These are people for whom music is not just a calling but something deeply embedded in culture.
What (or who) did you want to be when
you were growing up?
We knew nothing but becoming musicians as growing up
Name three people – alive or dead – you’d invite to your ultimate dinner party and why?
Nona Yagonavova a good friend and a soprano singer who passed away
Shimon Parnass. An Israeli radio journalist. And Yvonne Kahan our manager
These are people who enjoy good music , good drinks and food.
What are you reading at the moment? Whats’s currently playing on your iPod?
I am reading Omar Khayam. No iPod.
What’s your favourite thing to do in your spare time?
I love watching tennis games. Specially female l matches.
What are you looking forward to most about coming to New Zealand?
We look forward to meet the people and to see their reaction on our music. To see the beautiful country side. We don’t have much nature in Israel except from the desert and the sea . I believe your nature is astonishing. So we have heard.
Where do you live currently (suburb/region)? Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Samarkand/ Dushanbe in Tajikistan. Emigrated to Israel in 1990
What is your family background?
I come from a jewish Bukharian family
What languages do you speak?
Russian, Tajiki, Hebrew, Uzbek, Turkish
What is your role – e.g. director, artist, actor, dancer, writer, composer, musician…?
Composer and artist- musician
Can you give a brief account of the idea behind your work?
My dream was to gather my own family to perform around the world. That dream is at present coming through .
Where did the inspiration for this work come from?
The inspiration came from the children themselves who are all very musical talents.
What do you hope audiences will take away from this work?
Traditions kept in family is not something usual these days, but it has been for hundred of years. It is a beautiful way to keep the tradition and at the same time develop and change . We do both. We keep tradition, but we are developing the music within the modern times.
What else are you currently working on (outside this project)? Are there any forth coming projects you’d be happy to talk about?
We are currently working on our youngest members Amanda 8 and Abraham 2 years old to be prepared to perform. Amanda already performs. Also we are doing a huge tribute concert to myself Allo Alaev in May for 80 year old birthday.
Will this be your first visit to New Zealand? If not, when have you visited before?
This is our first trip to New Zealand
Do you have any artist/ cultural/ personal connections with New Zealand already?
No, but we wish.
For more on the Alaev Family at Elsewhere go here.
Womad Taranaki, New Zealand: March 15 -17 2013. For more on Womad 2013 artists at Elsewhere see here.
The Womad website for ticketing and information is here.