Los Angeles Review by Willard Manus

ALASH, the trio of musician/singers from Tuva, a tiny republic in the heart of Central Asia, recently celebrated its 20th anniversary with a remarkable concert at The Broad Stage. The trio is comprised of master throat-singers, practitioners of a musical tradition that stretches back hundreds of years but was pretty much unknown in the West until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990. The Tuvans, a nomadic people (often confused with Siberians), developed an intricate vocal music that sounds like no other.

"Utterly stunning," is how the Washington Post described it. ALASH
is responsible for popularizing the music, thanks to the many concerts it has given in the USA and Europe, and to the recordings it has made with Sun Ra Arkestra, Bela Fleck & the Fleckstones, and the Viridian Trio jazz band.

Accompanying themselves on drums, various stringed instruments, flutes and a Demir-Xomus (a kind of jews-harp), ALASH's three male singers (attired in native costumes) delved into their repertory of folk tunes, most of which had to do with horses, hunting, women, mountains, rivers and the hardship of living a peripatetic life. Palpable was their love for Tuvan music and culture--and the awareness that they were its ambassadors to the world at large.

(The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St, Santa Monica. Call 310-434-3200
or visit