The boy who didn’t want to learn violin spellbinds Ashgabat


Raviliya Kadyrova

Ashgabat, 18 November 2016 (nCa) — Chen Zimbalista, the boy who didn’t want to learn violin, gave a spellbinding concern Thursday evening in Ashgabat.

Co-hosted by the Israeli embassy in Ashgabat and the ministry of culture of Turkmenistan the joint concert of Chen Zimbalista and the symphonic orchestra of Turkmenistan led by its artistic director and conductor Rasul Klychev, the concert was a feast for the soul.

Ambassador Itzhak Carmel Kagan said in his opening remarks that when Zimbalista was just five, he already knew what he wanted to do with his life. His mother wanted him to learn violin but he was determined to pursue percussion instruments. As a result, his mother sold her car to buy him marimba, a unique instrument with origins from Africa.

It was the same marimba that was flown in from Israel for the concert in Ashgabat.

Even though his marimba is the main attraction in every performance he gives around the world – and he has toured more than 17 countries already – Zimbalista is master of some 40 different percussion instruments.

The concert opened with Zimbalista playing Bach’s violin concerto in A minor on his marimba and meandered through the master pieces of Beethoven and Nury Halmamedov, the recklessly joyous Saudacao from Mexico and the soulful expression of love in Oblivion from Brazil, culminating with Zimbalista being Zimbalista with his marimba and percussion solo and sets.

In the eleven numbers on the ticket, first few were conducted by Zimbalista and the remaining by Klychev with Zimbalista leading on his marimba.

The orchestra, both under Zimbalista and Klychev, performed as one body, one heart, one soul. It was all so natural, so blissful.

The little bell that he wore around his left ankle, added further mystique to the magic of Zimbalista. With his skillful tapping of the left foot, he mixed subtle silver peals to his powerful music.

After the concert, the Israeli ambassador hosted a reception at his residence. Zimbalista said at the reception that even though he had given joint concerts in many countries, it was the first time that he felt a unique resonance, oneness, harmony with the symphonic orchestra of Turkmenistan. He plans a joint project.

This will hopefully propel the symphonic orchestra of Turkmenistan to the world stage, adding to the possibilities of how music can be the messenger of peace and love.

Here are some pictures from the concert: