Alash – Trio of Tuvan Throat Singers Perform in Concert March 29 at UNC Asheville; Campus Residency to Include Master Classes on March 27-28

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Alash, seated with their instruments

Alash, the trio from Tuva whose “throat singing” has taken them to venues that include Lincoln Center and the Chicago Bluegrass & Blues Festival, will perform in concert at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 29, in UNC Asheville’s Lipinsky Auditorium.

Alash was featured on Béla Fleck and the Flecktones’ Grammy-winning holiday CD, Jingle All the Way. They also have collaborated with the Sun Ra Arkestra space-jazz band, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and the beat-boxer Shodekeh.

The three members of Alash – Bady-Dorzhu Ondar, Ayan-ool Sam and Ayan Shirizhik – combine Western musical influences with the traditional music of their native Tuva, on the southern edge of Siberia. Traditional Tuvan instruments are featured along with guitar and other non-Tuvan instruments.

Alash’s music features the rare and difficult traditional practice of one voice singing multiple pitches simultaneously, creating a sound most unusual to Western ears. Throat singing was traditionally done outdoors by nomadic Tuvan herdsmen, who also use their voices to mimic the sounds of birds, animals, the wind and bubbling streams. For those interested in learning more about Tuvan music and culture, two master classes will be held in addition to the concert, as part of Alash’s three-day residency at UNC Asheville:

March 27 – Master Class on Tuvan music, with some lecture, performance and Q&A. Noon-1 p.m. in Humanities Lecture Hall. Free.

March 28 – Master Class on Tuvan art, culture and daily life, with some lecture, performance and Q&A. 9:30-10:45 a.m. in Humanities Lecture Hall. Free.

March 29 – Alash in concert, with the UNC Asheville student vocal ensemble, the Asheville Singers, opening the concert. 7 p.m. in Lipinsky Auditorium. Tickets are $15 general admission; $10 UNC Asheville/OLLI members; $5 area students and UNC Asheville employees; free for UNC Asheville students. For online tickets, visit

Alash’s residency at UNC Asheville is part of the university’s Cultural Events Series, which receives support from Biltmore Farms Hotels, Blue Ridge Public Radio and Our State magazine. For more information, contact the UNC Asheville Events & Conferences Office at or 828.251.6853.

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