ACCOMPLISHED MUSICIANS. Israeli guitarist Nitzan Bar (left) and saxophonist-composer Daniel Zimar (right) during an interview with the Philippine News Agency about the Philippine International Jazz and Arts Festival on Saturday (May 4, 2019). (Photo courtesy of Christine Cudis)
MANILA -- An annual gathering of local and foreign jazz artists in the Philippines celebrates more than just music but also friendship among various nationalities.
On May 4, the Philippine International Jazz and Arts Festival (PIJazzFest) capped its 14th anniversary in The City Club, Alphaland in Makati City through a gala night, showcasing all 10 of the jazz artists from here and around the world.
Among the many musicians who played during the night were crowd favorites Israeli saxophonist and composer Daniel Zamir and guitarist Nitzan Bar.
The duo wowed the crowd with their provocative line-up of jazz pieces that they personally composed and some were traditional Israeli worship songs that got the audience's attention.
In an interview before their performance, Zamir said his experience in the Philippines has been very eye-opening with the culture of the Filipinos.
“It is so amazing that there are a lot of people here but they get along pretty well,” the award-winning composer said.
On the other hand, Bar, at 21, already has a lot of experience in the music industry, growing up in a family of artists. He took his time in Manila wandering around and gathering stories that may give him inspiration to write his music later on.
“I had a lot of fun here, I walked from my place in Makati to Manila Ocean Park to get the feeling of how the locals thrive and enjoy it here and it was a good experience,” he said.
The two, partners since 2004, are set on promoting their brand of music, as well as their culture, in Israel and outside.
Being among the most influential in their country, the duo was invited by the embassy of Israel to come to the Philippines and represent their country to Filipinos and other nationalities as well.
Apart from the two, there were also Beto Caletti and Mishka Adams who performed South American music, and Australian saxophonist Damon Grant.
“This is a very nurturing experience as we meet different people and learn their culture but the most amazing part is understanding each other through the music we play even if we speak different languages,” Grant said in his earlier television interview.
The PIJazzFest always aims to introduce local and international jazz artists to one another, opening an opportunity to share and appreciate inspiring stories of where they come from and where they are going to as artists. (PNA)