Songlines Encounters Festival - 2014 Line-up

Thursday June 5 2014

  7.20pm Foyer
Leandra Varanda & Jonathan Preiss

Family Atlantica

8:00pm Hall One
Family Atlantica + Dobet Gnahore
Featuring the larger-than-life singer Luzmira Zerpa, Family Atlantica are an extended family of musicians from Venezuela, West Africa and East London. With a backing of thrilling West African percussion, the band is a product of the cultural vibrancy of this city. Family Atlantica's debut album was a Songlines favourite and their music is a thrilling ida y vuelta (going and coming) between Africa, the Caribbean and Europe.

Dobet Gnahore

Dobet Gnahore, from Ivory Coast, is one of the most dynamic young female performers of Africa. The daughter of a master percussionist, Dobet started performing aged 12 and was a member of Ivory Coast's pan-African ensemble Ki-Yi M'Bock. As a result, she sings in a large number of African languages. With striking costumes, Dobet's shows have a visceral energy and power, which you won't forget. *

Enchanted Tunes

Friday June 6 2014

  6.50pm Foyer
Brasov String Band
Anna Phoebe 7:30pm Hall One
Anna Phoebe + Oana Catalina Chitu
Anna Phoebe delivers a power-packed punch of violin. Her charismatic energy has seen her working with Jethro Tull, Roxy Music and Oi Va Voi. In her new project Between The Shadow & The Soul, she co-written with guitarist Nicolas Rizzi, she mixes Eastern and Western influences, plus a touch of Gypsy, into her lyrical and fiery playing.

Oana Catalina Chitu

One of Songlines' top albums last year was of the Romanian singer Oana Catalina Chitu singing the music of Maria Tanase (1913-1963), the 'Romanian Edith Piaf'. Tanase took folk tunes from all over the country and performed them in nightclubs and on the radio. With her rich, smokey voice, Oana Catalina Chitu makes her UK debut bringing this repertoire back to life with a fabulous virtuoso band. Oana Catalina Chitu's performance is kindly supported by the Romanian Cultural Institute London and the cimbalom is generously provided by the Embassy of Hungary in London.

Embassy of Hungary

Romanian Cultural Institute

Saturday June 7 2014

  6.50pm Foyer
Pouya Mahmoodi & Armin Firouzabadi

Kayhan Kalhor

6:15pm St Pancras Room
Kayhan Kalhor Q&A
Prior to his performance, the Iranian kamancheh player talks to Simon Broughton about the music and events that have inspired his music and demonstrates his specially commissioned instrument, the Shah Kaman.

Cigdem Aslan

7:30pm Hall One
Kayhan Kalhor & Ali Bahrami Fard + Cigdem Aslan
Kayhan Kalhor is renowned for his great musical partnerships. The Iranian kamancheh (spike fiddle) player has performed great duos with Indian, Turkish, Kurdish and Iranian musicians. This sublime pairing of bowed and struck strings features fellow Iranian musician Ali Bahrami Fard on a specially created bass santur in music that is meditative and uplifting.

Turkish Kurdish vocalist Cigdem Aslan is one of London's best-kept secrets, but not for much longer. Her debut album, Mortissa, has been attracting rave reviews and shows that Aslan is a lioness of rebetiko - the melancholy Greek and Turkish songs of Asia Minor. She's gathered a superb band, some of them moonlighting from She'Koyokh, with whom Cigdem also performs, and they'll be sure to round off Songlines Encounters in style.

Buy ticketsSonglines Subscriber Offers

  • 10% off Festival Pass (telephone orders only)
  • 25% discount on single tickets (excluding online saver seats)
  • For discount code see issue #90 subscribers' carrier sheet or email
  • Offers subject to availability
  • Deadline for booking June 5 2014
  • Book online at or call 020 7520 1490

Supporters of Songlines Encounters Festival 2014

  • Romanian Cultural Institute London
  • Enchanted Tunes
  • Embassy of Hungary London

*Dobet Gnahore is replacing Habib Koite, who is now unable to make the trip to the UK.