Yitzhak Yedid’s Myth of the Cave touring in February

Two outstanding musicians and composers are featured in a series of ground breaking concerts in February this year. Canadian clarinetist François Houle is regarded as one of today’s most inventive virtuosos. Israeli born, Brisbane based Yitzhak Yedid is a master pianist and composer who has been awarded numerous international prizes for his work synthesizing jazz and contemporary classical music.

YitzhakFrancioswebHoule and long-time collaborator Yedid will be joined by bass player Sam Pankhurst to perform Yedid’s composition Myth of the Cave which Houle and Yedid recorded together over ten years ago for the German ‘between the lines’ label.

Houle, Yedid and Pankhurst will also be performing original new works. Houle will perform ‘Aerials’, a suite of solo works for clarinet, and will collaborate with three saxophonists in Canberra for a special, extended edition of the SoundOut Festival.

“Israeli pianist/composer Yitzhak Yedid’s five-movement suite conveys terrific tension, aggravation and release. It’s a stunner. Minimizing the distinction between composition and improvisation, the music is entrusted to supple hands.” – Randal McIlroy, Coda Magazine

The story behind the myth

Yitzhak has shared his story of Myth of the Cave with AustralianJazz.net

Vienna, Sep 2001
10th Anniversary of Myth of the Cave
By Yitzhak Yedid

(Originally published on Galus Australis)

It was twelve years ago in Vienna, one of the most beautiful and musical cities in Europe, and a day before my 30th birthday that I performed a concert that completely changed the direction of my career. I became a composer with an interest to research new waves of compositional approaches to integrate Jewish music and Jewish ideas into Western classical music including improvisation.

American pianist Ran Blake, who a few years before was my teacher at the New England Conservatory in Boston, Massachusetts, encouraged me to send a copy of my debut solo piano album Full Moon Fantasy to Franz Koglmann – an Austrian jazz composer/trumpet player and a prominent European music figure. Koglmann liked the album and decided to introduce my music to the European scene. He invited me to perform Tachanun at the Wiener Music Galerie, a three-day festival he directed at the time for over a decade at the concert house in Vienna. I performed with two fantastic Israeli musicians – double bassist Ora Boasson-Horev and percussionist Vlad Nedelin.

A few minutes after we finished our performance at the festival, a young man came backstage to greet me. Later on I found out that he was the founder and CEO of a private bank in Frankfurt, a rich man, advocate of (good) music and very sporty (he drove his Maserati from Frankfurt to Vienna). He said that my performance was the best in the festival and the best that he had heard in a long time and so he would like to commission me to compose a new work for Between the Lines (a record label his bank sponsored,  Koglmann its artistic director). He said “You will hear from me” and we exchanged email addresses. Well, six months passed and I did not hear from him. One day, perhaps thanks to some sort of an inner feeling, I checked my Junk-Email before letting it be automatically deleted and there I found his message waiting for my response. It was, up to this day, the best musical offer that I have ever received – an invitation to compose and perform a new work and then to record an album in Frankfurt with any performers in the globe that I would chose, together with a generous commission fee. I of course immediately replied and accepted the offer with two hands.

It took me almost a year to compose Myth of the Cave in 2003-4 and I chose to perform it with virtuosi Canadian clarinetist François Houle and double bassist Ora Boasson-Horev from Jerusalem. In retrospect I believe that this was the point that my career as a composer actually started – one commission and one performance led to another and it all started to role. Now I have released 12 albums of my own original work, I am based in Brisbane (who could believe that?) and I lecture piano at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University.

“François Houle brilliantly illustrates the care, craft, and attention to detail that are crucial to successfully negotiating contemporary improvised music.” –  Art Lange, Fanfare Magazine

Tour dates

SYDNEY: Wed 5 Feb – 7.30pm
VJ’s (North Shore Temple Emanuel) – 28 Chatswood Avenue, Chatswood
First set: Yitzhak Yedid’s Myth of the Cave; Second set: New works for trio

Canberra: Fri 7 Feb – 8.00pm:
SoundOut Festival Extended
Smiths Alternative Bookshop, 76 Alinga St Canberra City.
Phone: 02 6247 4459
First set ‘Aerials’ solo
Second set with Psithurism Trio (John Porter, Rhys Butler, Richard Johnson; saxophones)

Brisbane: Sat 8 Feb – 8pm:
Brisbane Jazz Club – 1 Anne St Kangaroo Point.
First set: Yitzhak Yedid’s Myth of the Cave; Second set: New works for trio

Melbourne: Mon 10 Feb – 6pm:
Melbourne Recital Centre, The Salon – 31 Sturt St Southbank
Tickets: Standard $38 – Concession $28
Yitzhak Yedid’s Myth of the Cave


Yitzhak Yedid on Facebook

François Houle on the web www.francoishoule.ca