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Easter festival »The Silk Road«

The programme of the digital Silk Road festival at a glance.

The Silk Road is one of the world's oldest trade routes. For hundreds of years, not only merchandise changed hands here: it was also a place from which religions and cultures spread.

For the Easter festival »The Silk Road« in April 2020, many top musicians from the countries along the traditional trade route were invited to Hamburg. Now that the festival has had to be cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the wide variety of music from the programme can be explored here in digital form.

I have not told the half of what I saw.

Marco Polo

To start with

READING: »Incense in exchange for gunpowder«. Silk was not the only commodity: a (short) history of the (long) trade route

DISCOVERY: Elbphilharmonie explains: The instruments of the Silk Road introduced in short videos and descriptions

LISTENING: The playlist of music from »The Orient«

TASTING: The Elbphilharmonie team has tried out some traditional dishes. You can find the recipes here (in German).

A trip down the Silk Road in 5 musical stages

Majid Derakhshani

1. Iran

ElphiAtHome: Iranian musician Majid Derakhshani can be heard in a recital streamed from the empty Elbphilharmonie. Derakhshani plays the long-necked lute tar and is accompanied on the santur by Saeid Zamani.

To the concert

2. Afghanistan

The musical worlds of Afghanistan: The Ensemble Safar plays classical pieces from the golden age of Afghan music.

Samarkand © Jamshid Kholikulov / Pexels

3. Uzbekistan

Uzbek songs: About the classic Uzbek song cycle Shashmaqam and the artist Gulzoda Khudoynazarova, who has an impressive command of this music.

4. Mongolia

The music of Mongolia: Discover the sound of the horsehead violin and the secrets of overtone singing with the Egschiglen and Khusugtun ensembles.

Peking Opera

5. China

In Buddha's footsteps: It wasn't only merchandise that changed hands on the Silk Road. Music, religions and doctrines likewise travelled from East to West and the other way round. Buddhism scholar Dr. Carsten Krause talks about an invisible and incalculably valuable exchange.

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