Clarinetist Kinan Azmeh and his CityBand will play the UBS Atrium Series on Thursday, May 18 at 12:30 p.m. in the Atrium at 1000 Harbor Boulevard, located in the Lincoln Harbor section of Weehawken.
Hailed as a “virtuoso” and “intensely soulful” by The New York Times and “spellbinding” by the New Yorker, Kinan Azmeh’s distinctive sound across different musical genres has gained him international recognition.
Kinan has been touring the world as soloist and composer. Notable appearances include:
Carnegie Hall, Opera Bastille, Tchaikovsky Grand Hall, Royal Albert Hall, Teatro Colon, The Kennedy Center, The Mozarteum, and the Damascus Opera House for its opening concert in his native Syria.
He has appeared as soloist with the New York Philharmonic, the Seattle Symphony, the Bavarian Radio Orchestra, the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, the Qatar Philharmonic, and the Syrian Symphony Orchestra, among others. And Kinan has shared the stage with Marcel Khalife, Aynur, Daniel Barenboim, and Jivan Gasparian. He is also a member of Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble with whom he was awarded a Grammy earlier this year.
A fusion of musical influences
Formed in 2006 in New York City, the Kinan Azmeh CityBand immediately gained recognition for its virtuosic and high energy performances, which have consistently received praise from critics and audiences alike. The band strives to reach a balance between classical music, jazz, and the music of Kinan’s homeland, Syria. Band members include guitarist Kyle Sanna, bassist Josh Myers, and percussionist John Hadfield
In support of the group’s CD, “Elastic City,” the band toured the US, Canada, France, England, Germany, Holland, Egypt, Lebanon, and Turkey.
Stranded in Beirut
It was in Lebanon earlier this year that Azmeh found himself stranded for a time due to the travel ban from seven Muslim-majority countries imposed by the Trump Admnistration, forcing him to wait out the ban before being allowed back into the United States. He has made his home in Brooklyn since moving to America just after the 9/11 attacks, according to an article in The Daily Beast. As a touring musician, his Syrian background has meant regular detentions and security checks at airports in the U.S.
All performances for the UBS Atrium Series begin at 12:30 p.m. The concert is free and open to the general public. For directions and more information, please check the HRPAC website – www.hrpac.org – or call the concert hotline at (201) 716-4540.