Libby Gardner Concert Hall will be filled with the haunting beauty of the Native American flute on Thursday, Feb. 24, as renowned flutist R. Carlos Nakai joins the Utah Philharmonia in a concert themed “Through an American Lens.” Of Navajo-Ute heritage, Nakai is the world’s premier performer of the Native American flute and has numerous Grammy nominations and more than 4 million albums sold to show for it.
“Through an American Lens” will feature traditional American music, as seen through the unique viewpoint of the composer, with three different expressions of the American experience. The elite 95-member Utah Philharmonia will present Aaron Copland’s “Billy the Kid Suite,” which originated as a ballet that incorporates traditional folk songs and cowboy tunes, as well as John Adams’ “The Chairman Dances,” which is described as a “foxtrot for orchestra.” A major force in the field of traditional American music, Nakai will perform the “Two Worlds Concerto,” written for him by Arizona composer James DeMars.
While maintaining his status as an iconic musician and preeminent performer of the Native American flute, R. Carlos Nakai is also the ultimate crossover artist. He plays everything from traditional music to jazz, and participates in some highly unusual collaborations — from his blending of Native American melodies with Jewish and Arabic songs with cellist Udi Bar-David to his recordings with Tibetan flutist Nawang Khechog and Hawaiian slack key guitarist and singer Keola Beamer.
Tickets are $7 general admission and $3 for students and seniors. They can be purchased by calling 801-581-7100 or at www.kingsburyhall.org. Concert begins at 7:30 pm.