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July 2013

A Celebration of Japan’s Ocean Day: Invocation 2013

Sunday, July 21, 2:00 PM PDT

Invocation 2:00 PM Cypress Grove Twentieth-century Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu dreamed of swimming in an “ocean that has no east, no west.” His dream of an international culture has inspired director-musician Susan Waterfall to bring together traditional and modern Japanese music in celebration of Takemitsu’s legacy and Japan’s July national holiday, Ocean Day. Karl Young, shakuhachi Ancient Current: Ron Nadeau, Doug Smith, and Johnny Hubel Haiku by: Jane Reichhold Dan Barth Teresa Whitehill Barbara MacKay Jeanne Jackson, Sue Hansen and…

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GONNA, Contemporary Taiko (US Debut) 2013

Sunday, July 21, 4:00 PM PDT

Sunday, July 21, 4:00 PM Tent Concert Hall This exciting contemporary taiko ensemble—celebrating their tenth anniversary by visiting the U.S. for the first time with the help of the Mendocino Sister Cities Association—performs kumi-daiko (multi-drum, multi-players) complemented with the addition of marimbas and western drums. GONNA’S blend of Wadaiko (traditional Japanese drumming and drums) and more western influences has made them pioneers of a very unique ensemble style. With a repertoire that includes traditional Wadaiko pieces, sophisticated original pieces and…

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Bento Supper by the Sea 2013

Sunday, July 21, 6:00 PM PDT

Bento (弁当 bentō) is a single-portion takeout or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine, usually in a box-shaped container. Proceeds benefit Otsuchi, Japan (sister city of Fort Bragg), devastated by tsunami.

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Ocean That Has No East, No West 2013

Sunday, July 21, 8:00 PM PDT

The Life and Legacy of Toru Takemitsu A Susan Waterfall Production Susan Waterfall’s multi-media production brings to life the artistic world of Japan’s great composer Toru Takemitsu (1930-1996), a seminal figure in modern composition. Takemitsu’s art suggests a fresh language that fuses Eastern and Western creative sensibilities. Days before his death, Takemitsu described a remarkable dream that he was a whale swimming in an ocean that had no east, no west. “It was music that sounded strangely similar to Debussy…

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Middle East Peace Concert, Dror Sinai Trio, Rhythms of Harmony 2013

Wednesday, July 24, 3:00 PM PDT

Wednesday July 24 3:00 PM Caspar Community Center Note: The particulars of some events were finalized after the printed program went to press. Consequently the printed program lists an incorrect date and time for this event. “Rhythm is all around us, in everything we see, we touch, we breathe. With rhythm, we shall achieve better communication and understanding among ourselves and all people: all people as one.” ~ Dror Sinai Celebrate the cultural constants that unite the Middle East; experience…

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Cherish the Ladies 2013

Thursday, July 25, 8:00 PM PDT

Thursday July 25 8:00 PM Tent Concert Hall Cherish the Ladies has become the most successful and sought after Irish-American group in Celtic music. When describing them, the critics say it best. The Boston Globe: “It is simply impossible to imagine an audience that wouldn’t enjoy what they do.  The Washington Post: “An astonishing array of virtuosity“. For the past twenty-five years, Cherish the Ladies have proven themselves worthy of these accolades for their vocal, instrumental, and step dancing talents.…

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Pedrito Martinez Group 2013

Friday, July 26, 8:00 PM PDT

Friday July 26 8:00 PM Tent Concert Hall The Pedrito Martinez Group is a small band with a huge sound. It has its roots planted firmly in the Afro-Cuban Rumba tradition and in the bata rhythm and vocal chants of the music of Yoruba and Santeria. With the band’s superb musicianship and incredible instrumental, percussion, and vocal technique, it has taken those traditions into fresh, new directions and has earned a world-wide following.

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July 2014

$12 – $37

Juncal Street: Homage to the Flamenco Tradition 2014

Monday, July 14, 8:00 PM PDT

Six incredible artists, all virtuosi of their art forms, draw global inspiration from contemporary art and dance. Three-time Isadora Duncan nominees for Most Outstanding Music, Ensemble, and Individual Performance, they constitute a multicultural medley of Gypsy, French, and Spanish origins. Award-winning dancers Michael Gutierrez and Fanny Ara are also featured in the performances. Come prepared for a lively evening—and bring your mantilla. “When artists can carry an audience’s intensive response as these six were able in this setting, it’s really…

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$12 – $37

April Verch Band: Extravagant Step-Dancing Style from Canada 2014

Thursday, July 17, 8:00 PM PDT

April Verch specializes in the hybrid heritage of her native Ottawa Valley, creating North American roots music with fantastic fiddling, great songwriting, a terrific band, and amazing step-dancing—who could ask for more?  They have been a major hit with Shetland audiences for years and will set your toes to tapping.  Come see this great group with a Celtic style of song and dance for an exhilarating evening. “From Canada, April Verch specializes in the hybrid heritage of her native Ottawa…

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$12 – $37

Poncho Sanchez and his Latin Jazz Band 2014

Thursday, July 24, 8:00 PM PDT

Poncho Sanchez’s music is a swirl of some of the hottest colors and brightest lights to emerge from either side of the border. At every show Latin jazz, swing, bebop, salsa and other infectious grooves collide and churn with results that are no less than dazzling. Among the more prominent figures that inform his music are conga drummer and composer Chano Pozo, and trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie. Poncho Sanchez says, “There’s room for a lot of different sounds in our music.…

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July 2015

$12 – $39

De Temps Antan 2015

Sunday, July 12, 3:00 PM PDT

De Temps Antan performs memorable and time-honored melodies of Quebec, songs with a hint of contemporary that speak to familiar rhythms of the past. With a special blend of musical flair and using fiddle, accordion, harmonica, guitar, bouzouki and a number of other instruments, these virtuosos – Éric Bèaudry, André Brunet and Pierre-Luc Dupuis – create memorable songs of yesteryear. A performance with boundless energy and the unmistakable joie de vivre found only in traditional Quebec music. Eric Bèaudry –…

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$12 – $39

Vishten 2015

Sunday, July 12, 8:00 PM PDT

A Canadian roots music band, Vishten entertains with a high-spirited concert of Acadian and Celtic genres combined with rock and indie-folk influence. One of the most respected bands on the international touring scene, enjoy Vishten’s trademark blend of accordion, fiddle, flutes, step-dancing, guitar, to name just a few. These musicians are powerful francophone singers and fiery instrumentalists! This trio blends Celtic and French influences with Canada’s equivalent of Cajun music.” – Mosaïk Review Living Traditions Magazine They’re one of the…

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$12 – $29

WAHID: Dimitris Mahlis, oud, and Chris Wabich, frame drums 2015

Friday, July 17, 3:00 PM PDT

The primary instruments for WAHID (meaning one) are oud and frame drums, each of which has an ancient history, as found on clay tablets and papyrus scrolls. A duo combination of oud and frames has never been explored or codified, even though the two instruments have complimented each other in classical ensembles for hundreds of years. The most common reaction by an audience is shock at how complete the group sounds with just two people. It is best understood live…

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$12 – $39

Bassekou Kouyate 2015

Tuesday, July 21, 8:00 PM PDT

Bassekou Kouyate, musician from Mali, is one of the true masters of the ngoni, an ancient traditional lute found throughout West Africa, which he started playing at the age of 12. His band is known as Ngoni ba and he has collaborated with many musicians around the world. He was part of Taj Mahal’s and Toumani Diabate’s Kulanjan project, has toured with Ali Farka Toure, impressing as the band’s solo ngoni player, and appeared on stage together with Sir Paul…

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July 2016

$12 – $49

Peter Mawanga and the Amaravi Movement 2016

Saturday, July 9, 7:30 PM PDT

A self-proclaimed “Voice for the Voiceless” and leader of the premier band in Malawi, Mawanga joins traditional Malawian rhythms, compositions and vocal arrangements with modern instrumentation to produce socially conscious, inspirational music. With his poignant songs and strong messages, the artist strives to speak for the underprivileged and expose the world to the riches of Malawian music. Fusing the rock outfit of drums-bass-guitar with the traditional sounds of Malawi’s marimba, thumb piano and percussion, he creates a modern African sound…

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$12 – $39

Paul McKenna Band 2016

Monday, July 11, 7:30 PM PDT

Combining their love for folk and traditional music, the Paul McKenna Band offers captivating sounds. With a contemporary approach, but not straying too far from their roots, their arrangements have been called both fresh and innovative. Their exciting sound is created through outstanding vocals, driving guitar and bouzouki, intense fiddle playing, a warm pairing of flute and whistles and dynamic bodhrán and percussion. The best folk band to have come out of Scotland in the last twenty years” – New York Times

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$12 – $39

Julian Pollack, featuring Sveti and ROSA 2016

Thursday, July 21, 7:30 PM PDT

An exciting and many faceted evening inspired by traditional Serbian folk music. Enjoy Julian with drummer Marko Djordjevic’s band, Sveti, and their amazing compositions based on Serbian folk rhythms. The international women’s vocal group ROSA, specializing in Serbian non-tempered singing, will round out a complex and riveting musical evening! Sveti is a group of absolutely monster musicians.” – Phil DiPietro, Allaboutjazz ROSA CGA PROMO 2-HD from Marija Stojnic on Vimeo.

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July 2017

$12 – $40

Pine Leaf Boys 2017

Wednesday, July 12, 7:30 PM PDT

Four-time Grammy-nominated, the world-renowned Pine Leaf Boys have made a name presenting their own inimitable brand of music with youthful exuberance, reviving ancient songs and bringing them to the bandstand. Hailing from southwest Louisiana, they are known for their wild shows, thoughtful arrangements, and breathing new life into Louisiana music. The best new, energetic, and fun Cajun band in a very long time. New York Times

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$12 – $40

Kanekoa, Joan Soriano: Double Bill 2017

Sunday, July 16, 7:30 PM PDT

Born in the rural countryside near Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic, Joan Soriano fashioned his first guitar from a tin can and fishing line and has never looked back. Soriano plays steel string bachata with equal parts romance and grit. The Afro-infused rhythm that permeates his music has made him a favorite among dancers. This engagement of Joan Soriano is funded through Southern Exposure: Performing Arts of Latin America, a program of Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation in partnership with…

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Joan Soriano Workshop 2017

Monday, July 17, 10:00 AM PDT

Be inspired by Joan Soriano’s work with local middle and high school students who have been participating in the Lead Guitar program.

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$12 – $30

Babaghanoush 2017

Wednesday, July 19, 2:30 PM PDT

Guitarist Dimitris Mahlis, drummer Ralph Humphrey, bassist Jerry Watts and saxophonist Antti Suzuki bring life to the multi ethnic compositions of Mahlis. Mahlis’s playing style has been described as soulful and unique, and his compositions have set a standard in cross-cultural pollination. Suzuki’s improvisational talents have been showcased over a varied musical landscape. Humphrey’s brilliant way with multiple meters, along with Watts’ unique approach to non-western genres, creates a rhythm section that explores musical territory with ease.

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$12 – $50

San Jose Taiko 2017

Friday, July 21, 7:30 PM PDT

Acknowledged as one of the premier taiko ensembles in the world, San Jose Taiko has mesmerized audiences and critics alike with the powerful, spellbinding and propulsive sounds of taiko, the Japanese drum.  Founded in 1973 by young Asian Americans searching to convey their experiences as third generation Japanese Americans, and inspired by traditional Japanese drumming, company performers express the beauty and harmony of the human spirit through the voice of the taiko as they strive to create new dimensions in…

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July 2018

$15 – $50

The StepCrew 2018

Saturday, July 7, 7:30 PM PDT

Bringing together three styles of exhilarating dance forms—Ottawa Valley stepdance, Irish stepdance, and Tap—these dancers and musicians take you on an amazing dance journey. As if dancing weren’t enough, The StepCrew boasts world-class fiddlers backed by an ensemble of some of the most talented musicians in the Celtic music scene today.

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July 2019

$15 – $52

BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet 2019

Saturday, July 13, 7:30 PM PDT

Since forming in 1975, Grammy winners BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet have been making some of the most potent and popular Cajun music on the planet. Born out of the rich Acadian ancestry of its members, and created and driven by bandleader Doucet’s spellbinding fiddle playing and soulful vocals, BeauSoleil’s distinctive sound derives from the distilled spirits of New Orleans jazz, blues rock, folk, swamp pop, Zydeco, country, and bluegrass.

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$15 – $42

Le Vent du Nord 2019

Wednesday, July 17, 7:30 PM PDT
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$15 – $42

Badi Assad, Diego Figueiredo 2019

Thursday, July 18, 7:30 PM PDT

Brazil’s Badi Assad is lauded as one of the world’s most unique performance artists of this generation. She transcends traditional styles of her native Brazilian music with a mixture of pop, jazz and world/ethnic sounds from around the world. Combining an extraordinary guitar talent, unique mouth percussion and beautiful singing, Assad creates an exciting, fresh sound. Fellow Brazilian Diego Figueiredo, a virtuoso with an infectious, joyful feeling, is a fast-rising star among the world’s greatest jazz guitarists. His superb technique and imagination have made him one of the hottest international names as he unites a fusion of Brazilian music with jazz. Twice a winner at the Montreux Jazz Competition, Figueiredo is also a producer, arranger, orchestrator and multi-instrumentalist.

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Guitars in the Mendocino Village 2019

Friday, July 19, 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM PDT

If you’re out and about Mendocino on Friday afternoon July 19 during the Festival you may happen upon a little Bach, some bossa nova, or even a classic pop song being conjured up on one or more guitars. The Mendocino Guitar Workshop, in co-operation with the Mendocino Music Festival, will unleash another eclectic crew of guitarists in shops and galleries around the village to add a little spice to the fortnight’s already festive air. Watch for signs indicating the locations…

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July 2020


We’re Still Here! Virtual Opening Night 2020

Saturday, July 11, 7:30 PM PDT

Opening Night, on July 11: With some scenic aerial footage of the tent site and fun discussions with Festival Orchestra musicians and the makers and shakers of the July season, get yourself a glass of your favorite beverage and feel again the heartening spirit of music in Mendocino. 7:30 PM, at your house.

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