Black String, a unique quartet that fuses traditional Korean music with contemporary improvisational sounds, plays Willoughby Amphitheatre Summer Festival Series. (Nah Seung Yull/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

Korean traditions with a mix of jazz

Black String plays Summer Festival Series at Willoughby Amphitheatre

Percussion! Jazz guitar! Six-stringed zither? Bamboo flutes…

Black String takes over the Willoughby Community Park Amphitheatre on Thursday, July 18, for what the Township is promising to be a unique night of world music.

Drawing on Korean traditional history and adding in mixtures of free improvisation and jazz, instruments such as the Geomungo – a 6-stringed zither – help give the band a very distinct cultural style.

The Korean quartet is part of Langley Township’s Summer Festival Series aimed at bringing a medley of varying performers to the local stage every Thursday night.

Black String formed in 2011 as part of UK Connection, a government-sponsored Korea/UK cultural exchange program. Since then, Black String has performed at the London Jazz Festival, WOMEX 2016, and countless festivals across the world.

Traditional Korean items such as the stringed Yanggeum and Daeguem flute are also part of the purely instrumental experience.

“While their instruments are traditional they present extremely modern jazzy composition that are unique,” said Festival Series organizer Peter Tullumello. “They have performed worldwide at major venues including the Kennedy Centre.”

The band is currently on a Canadian tour, stopping for the Vancouver Folk Music Festival on July 19 and 20 following their Festival Series performance.

Read More: “Let’s go to Langley to see a show!

The concert begins at 7 p.m. at Willoughby Community Park, 7700 Block of 202A Street next to the Langley Events Centre. Korean drumming group Pangut will open with a pre-show at 6:30 p.m.

For more information on the band and to see the full Summer Festival Series line-up, people can visit www.tol.ca/summerfest.

Next week, The Russ Rosen Band and The Cole Patenaude Band take the stage, Thursday, July 25.

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