York music Professor Sundar Viswanathan to headline the next Faculty Concert

Versatile performer, composer, international touring artist and York music Professor Sundar Viswanathan takes centre stage with his ensemble Aavatar in a signature concert on Feb. 27 at 7:30pm at the Tribute Communities Recital Hall on the Keele campus.

Sundar Viswanathan in performance
Sundar Viswanathan

The show is part of the Department of Music’s 2013-2014 Faculty Concert Series.

Avataar marries Hindustani raag and taal, hardbop jazz, Brazilian lyricism, electronica, atmospheric textures and ambiance, Javanese gamelan and contemporary improvisation to create a mesmerizing blend of rhythmic hypnotism, sonic landscapes and soaring melody. David Fujino in an article published in The Live Music Report, described Vishwanathan’s music as “…a world of diversity in which tradition and innovation successfully meet… a consistently original and haunting musical voice… Sundar’s South Asian musical influences blend seamlessly with the ambitious sonic flows of his fellow jazz musicians to create a different kind of world music.”

Well-known as both a vocalist and instrumentalist, Viswanathan plays sax and flute. He will be joined onstage by Avataar bandmates Michael Occhipinti (guitar), Felicity Williams (vocals), Ravi Naimpally (tabla), Justin Gray (bass) and Giampaolo Scatozza (percussion). The group will offer an adventurous program of original compositions.

In addition to Avataar, Viswanathan leads his eponymous quartet and Sundar’s Induswest Project, and performs and records with the world music ensemble Jaffa Road. He has also appeared with many other groups, including the Grammy-nominated Charles Tolliver Big Band, and with leading artists such as Wynton Marsalis, Billy Hart, Jeanne Lee, Joe Lovano, Clark Terry, Al Martino and Kenny Wheeler.

Viswanathan has appeared in clubs and at major festivals across Europe, South Africa and Japan. Closer to home, his performance credits include the Lincoln Center, the Count Basie Invitational Jazz Festival, and leading New York City jazz clubs such as the Blue Note and Birdland, and Toronto venues including Lula Lounge, Trane Studio, the Rex Hotel, Glenn Gould Studio and Harbourfront Centre.

Viswanathan joined the professoriate in York’s Faculty of Fine Arts in 2001. His teaching areas include jazz woodwind and saxophone performance, jazz theory and the music of Bollywood films.

Tickets are $15, or $5 for students and seniors. For tickets, contact the Box Office online or call 416-736-5888.