Hello everyone and happy August!
We have been very busy this year!
2017 Saraz Chromatic Set
In our continued journey of exploring chromatic playing on the handpan, we recently finished our 5th Saraz Chromatic Set. It is the first set to be built on three sizes of Saraz in order to maximize ideal internal resonance. The set ranges from B2 – D#5 with every note between F3 and D#5 represented in 2-4 places for ideal resonance and ergonomics. This is the first set to include Bb4 as a fundamental in multiple locations as well.
David Kuckherman and River Guerguerian
The chromatic set was debuted at the Asheville Percussion Festival in June by David Kuckhermann, River Guerguerian and Adam Maalouf. David and River then composed and recorded an EP with the set that will also feature a few other local artists. We expect the EP to be released in a couple months.
Until then, we invite you to check out the video of the first released song from the EP, Seven Circles. It can be found on the home page of our new website! Big thanks to Fiasco Pictures for their work filming and editing the video!
Additionally, you can find another version of the video with interviews of River Guerguerian and Mark Garner HERE.
New Saraz Website
Big thanks to the fine folks at Electric Lemonade for their help in further developing our website and giving it a fresh new design. It has been an absolute pleasure working with them!
In other news, we are also happy to now offer the Hard Case Technologies Turtle for all of our 19″ diameter Saraz. Additionally, we now have Phoenix Oil and Handpan Stands in stock for players in the USA and Canada.
We were quite excited to see our sponsorship to the Lake Eden Arts Festival sincerely touch close to home when they used the money to purchase more steel pans for the Kids on Pans Programs at LEAF international Guatalmala: Bequia. LEAF International is a non-profit organization that focuses on connecting cultures and creating community through music and arts. In Bequia, a city in the Caribbean, LEAF specifically has worked to provide youth with access to steel pan instruments, education, and opportunities to perform. The Saraz Foundation’s sponsorship allowed them to purchase more instruments for the program. These instruments have been able to connect children to their cultural heritage of the steel pan. Learning to play and perform boosts students’ learning abilities and confidence. Socializing with other students and performing weaves together community. LEAF started humbly providing a few instruments with some education when the program began. Since then, the program has flourished as enrollment in their classes has grown. Students were able to perform at the LEAF music and art festival in North Carolina and they have also been able to teach other students. The local Bequia government has recognized the importance of the program and has honored it with support. The local families, friends, and teachers of the students have grown together to take stewardship of the program while empowering themselves to better their community together. Most importantly, the students themselves are empowered and given valuable learning experiences that can inspire them for the rest of their lives. For about the program including performance videos can be found HERE. We offer our sincerest applaud to LEAF! Such great and inspiring work these folks do!!!!
Our most recent sponsorship went to Accelerating Appalachia, which is a nature-based business accelerator, connecting innovative businesses, investors and mentors aligned with people, place and prosperity. They attract and scale high-impact, seed-stage businesses in the sectors of Farming, Food, Clean Energy, Forest products (natural building) and non-timber forest products (ginseng, mushrooms, fruit & nut trees), Fiber/ Textiles, Craft Brewing/ Distilling, Botanicals/ Wellness, Outdoor Industry, and other innovative triple bottom-line businesses with special consideration for innovators and entrepreneurs from marginalized populations. We at Saraz believe in the principles Accelerating Appalachia operates under and are happy to see the support they offer to businesses and the communities they touch.
Thank you as always for your interest in the Saraz. We sincerely can not build instruments without you! Wishing you all many blessings and endless inspirations!
– The Saraz Crew