Known for its brash and friendly people, spicy food, laid back tea houses, and the distinctive twang of its spoken dialect, Sichuan is the Texas of China. It is from Sichuan that philosopher Lao Tzu, according to legend, mounted a water buffalo and rode off into the sunset, never to be seen again. Its music combines colours from rustic country folk, street songs and the ear splitting cacophony of gongs and cymbals. It is more like blues or early rock and roll than classical music. Even when the opera is hard core, featuring long stretches of voice and percussion which could be straight out of an avant garde composition by Luciano Berio.
In Water Pushes Sand, composer Erik Griswold and the Australian Art Orchestra team up with all-star musicians and performers of Sichuan to create a wild intercultural celebration. The ten-piece big band fuses Sichuan melodies and rhythms with modern jazz improvisation, contemporary dance and video projections that evoke the vibrant landscape of the Chengdu Provence.
“Water Pushes Sand was a great success at OzAsia Festival. The audiences loved it, unanimous appraise.”