Tasting the Music

By Gilad Ephrat, musician

Gilad Ephrat plays double bass for The Israeli Ethnic Ensemble.

On my honeymoon on a Greek island a couple of years ago, I fell under the spell of two men—Stoykos and Ilias—and the experience inspired me to compose a piece I now play in concert with the Israeli Ethnic Ensemble. The one who reminded me of a famous Israeli comedian operated a small restaurant; his friend, a tall, lanky guy, ran a tavern nearby.

One of the most amazing things about our restaurant experience was how long we lingered over a single meal. Stoykos worked alone and had to do everything—chop the food, cook it, serve us, etc. The meal took six hours.

When we play this Greek-flavored piece, I tell the story about our lunch. I know people enjoy the music because I notice the way they listen and applaud. But one day last week, when we played Stoykos and Ilias at Westminster Village Retirement Community, I felt one special listener really understood me more than anyone else ever had. Her hand shot up as soon as we offered to answer questions.

I can’t remember exactly what she said, but it was something like this: “How many courses go into a meal where you were? In the middle of the piece there was a place where you bowed really fast, what kind of food were you thinking of, was it spaghetti, meatballs, or chips?”

I told her about dolmas, those delicious stuffed grape leaves one finds in Greece. But I wished I could say more. Her question was so good and her metaphors were endless. She truly savored the sounds I bowed on my double bass, accompanied by euphonium, violin and percussion.

We’ll play Stoykos and Ilias again in Terre Haute, Indiana, October 29 and in Sandusky, Ohio, Nov. 6. Please come!

Learn more about the Israeli Ethnic Ensemble…
View upcoming Arts Midwest World Fest Events…

Gilad Ephrat plays the double bass.
Gilad Ephrat and his double bass in Bloomington, Illinois. Photo by Lindajoy Fenley.

Comments

hmmm…taste good

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