Flushing Town Hall’s popular mini global mashups series extended through summer

Flushing Town Hall
The next concert in the series will be “Ireland Meets Morocco” on Sunday, May 15, at 1 p.m. (Photo courtesy of Flushing Town Hall)

Flushing Town Hall is continuing one of its most in-demand series, “Common Ground: Mini-Global Mashups,” through the summer with a brand-new lineup of musicians beginning with “Ireland Meets Morocco” on Sunday, May 15, at 1 p.m. 

The monthly concert series pairs two performers from different musical disciplines and cultural backgrounds together on stage for a collaboration that yields a wholly unique musical experience. Acclaimed trumpeter and composer Frank London of The Klezmatics, who has performed in Flushing Town Hall’s original, large-scale Global Mashups series, will return to curate the summer series.

“Audiences can look forward to enjoying phenomenal, world-class performers whose music is tied to their traditions but simultaneously modernized and fused with other musical elements that expand their borders,” London said.

Ellen Kodadek, Flushing Town Hall’s executive and artistic director, said they’re thrilled to continue the beloved world music series. 

“This is what Flushing Town Hall does best — we bring diverse communities together on common ground, through the arts,” Kodadek said. 

The upcoming performance, “Ireland Meets Morocco,” features Cillian Vallely and Samir Langus, accompanied by multi-instrumentalist Matt Mancuso.  

Vallely is the uilleann pipes and low whistle player with the renowned Irish band Lunasa, described as “the hottest Celtic band on the planet” by the Irish Voice. In recent years, he has played and recorded with Bruce Springsteen, Natalie Merchant, Mary Chapin-Carpenter, Tim O’Brien and Riverdance, in addition to recording as a guest on over 50 albums.

With Lunasa, he has performed at The Hollywood Bowl, Glastonbury Festival, Womad Aledaide and Edmonton Folk Festival in addition to multiple tours of Asia, Australia, the U.S. and Europe. 

Langus is a Grammy-nominated Gnawa master, born and raised in the city of Agadir, Morocco. Langus learned Gnawa, the southern Moroccan trance music with roots in pre-Islamic animist traditions, from the old masters of Morocco.

Langus uses traditional instrumentation such as the lute-like Sintir and the large castanet-type Krakebs to accompany its ancient chants, but his approach is resolutely innovative. It is a hypnotic take on this ecstatic, trance-inducing tradition that has enthralled and inspired generations of musicians worldwide.

The series then continues throughout the summer, with a new mini global mashup each month. 

  • On Sunday, June 12, “Tibet Meets Colombia,” will feature Tibetan singer Yungchen Lhamo and Colombian artist Martín Vejarano, who also serves as a teaching artist at Flushing Town Hall, accompanied by guitarist Jorge Iván “Tito” Duarte.
  • The Sunday, July 24 concert, “Gospel Meets Côte d’Ivoire,” will feature Jewish Gospel singer Joshua Nelson and Ivory Coast dancer, drummer and Flushing Town Hall teaching artist Vado Diomande.
  • The Sunday, Aug. 21 concert, “Ukraine Meets Cuba,” will feature Ukrainian bandura (Ukrainian lute/harp) master Julian Kytasty and Cuban artists Danae Blanco and Juan Carlos Formal.

Each concert will be followed by a Q&A conversation between the artists and the audience hosted by Frank London or other special guest moderators.

For the series’ full schedule and to purchase tickets, click here.