‘Echoes of the Silk Road’ is a special concert programme of music and spoken word featuring arrangements and interpretations of music inspired by the incredible fusion of cultures, religions, lifestyles found along the medieval ‘Silk Road’ which stretched from China through the Middle East across Europe and into Ireland in the west.
Amanda Lowe says:
‘My instrument, the Hammer Dulcimer, evolved through the cross-cultural fertilisation of traders, warriors and pilgrims who met along the Silk Road. It is found in many countries along the route, each area creating distinctly different Dulcimers to suit the local music.’
‘These concerts feature two unusual instruments: Hammer Dulcimer – a precursor of the piano and Hurdy Gurdy – a medieval wheel violin. During the performance we will also be weaving tales and legends from the different countries. We ainim to perform this music in beautiful historic buildings with fine acoustic properties’.
A thousand years ago, the Chinese had built up a vibrant trade route with the west, feeding the medieval world’s desire for the opulence and luxury of silk which was produced by a closely guarded secret process in China. Silk became a trading currency, and exchanged hands many times by different traders along the journey, each time increasing in value.