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Oct 13
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FAJE Celebration Concert

The French-American Jazz Exchange (FAJE), a program of FACE Foundation and Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, in collaboration with the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States, will re-launch in 2018!

On October 26, 2017, 12 years after the creation of the program, a very special celebration concert took place at La Maison Française in Washington D.C., presented in collaboration with the D.C. Jazz Festival. 

On this occasion, FAJE grantees - Yohan Giaume & Evan Christopher / Anakronic & David Krakauer - played in front of a full audience mezmerized by the quality of both performances, though they were very different.

Whisper of a Shadow, an Homage to Louis Moreau Gottschalk - Yohan Giaume & Evan Christopher

French composer Yohan Giaume began the journey leading up to the Gottschalk project by immersing himself in the African-American and Creole traditions. In New Orleans, he captured the attention of clarinetist Evan Christopher, who commissionned him to create pieces for full orchestra. Together, they re-created the repertoire of 19th century avant-garde Louisiana pianist and composer Louis Moreau Gottschalk (1829-1869).

Gottschalk, whom few people know about today, played a major role in the development of American music. The new compositions and arrangements in "Whisper of a Shadow" aim to follow in the footsteps of his creative adventurousness and explore the imprint of his time by employing many of his processes and inspirations. Some pieces incorporate Afro-Creole rhythms and melodies, opera themes, Chopin's musical influences, French folk music, and Gottschalk's celebration of life, love, and death.

As the first notes sprang up, the audience entered into a dazzling atmosphere of southern American jazz with a hint of France. The echoes of rhythms from the Caribbean, folk songs from New Orleans and France, and classical French music transported audience members throughout the complex melodies of their jazz.

Anakronic/Krakauer - Anakronic Elektro Orchestra & David Krakauer

French musician Mikaël Charry met American clarinetist David Krakauer in 2005. Since then, the artists never stopped collaborating together on stage, in studios, and created many new sounds and compositions inspired by both of their musical identities. Years later, with his ensemble and collaborator Ludovic Kierasinski, Charry worked on a new innovative and original album with Krakauer: Anakronic/Krakauer.

A perfect mix of the futurist-electro sounds from the ensemble, along with the vibrant improvisations from Krakauer, the performance brought to the audience an unexpected kind of jazz. By the end, the public relished in the wild rhythms, with a new vision of what a French and American collaboration in jazz could be.

To learn more about these two projects, visit Whisper of a shadow website and Anakronic website.

FAJE is supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Florence Gould Foundation, the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, Institut français-Paris, and SACEM. The Charles Fishman Embassy Series event was made possible by the generous support of Linda and Michael Sonnenreich.

Whisper of a Shadow - Yohan Giaume & Evan Christopher (c)Greg Blakey

Anakronic/Krakauer (c)Greg Blakey

(c)Greg Blakey

(c)Greg Blakey