Mohannad Nasser at Espai Multicultural Sankofa, Valencia
VALENCIA, Spain. While back home, a savage war seems to go on without an end in sight, Syrian oudist and composer Mohannad Nasser offered Sunday a deeply soulful musical response. There were no political statements. None were intended and none were needed. The beauty and humanity of the performance said it all.
Playing before a full room at Espai Intercultural Sankofa, a multicultural neighborhood space in Valencia, Spain; Nasser chose to perform without amplification and it paid off handsomely. Unmediated by electronics, the warm, soft sound of the oud — an ancient, 12 strings, pear-shaped lute that is a mainstay in many Middle Eastern and North African music genres — spoke in a human scale — gently, imperfectly, and rich in nuance.