A Nonprofit Booking and Management Agency for the Live Performing Arts

World Music: Eastern Sounds combined with jazz-inspired riffs


PIano and Persian Santoor



AgawDilim - Tagalog for “dusk falling” and Kurdish for “awakened heart”- brings together Persian santoor and jazz-influenced keys to create a vibrant and global world music sound. Babak Soleimani, on Persian santoor, fuses Iranian sounds with contemporary grooves. Pianist Veena Kulkarni-Rankin joins with blues and classically-influenced keyboard work. And drummer Chris Pyke lays down the groove. Audiences will be mesmerized by their international rhythms and jazz-inspired riffs. Veena Kulkarni-Rankin was born and raised in the US Midwest and began her piano studies at the age of five. She won many youth competitions, studied at Indiana University, and then earned a doctorate in Piano Pedagogy and Performance at the University of Michigan. Finding great fulfillment in teaching, she is currently the Lead Instructor at Faber Piano Institute. She has also taught at Madonna University and at the University of Windsor. In 2011, Veena won the Best Liszt Interpretation prize at the Liszt-Garrison International Piano Competition and gave two East Coast premieres. Over the years, as a lover of all types of music, she has branched off into other styles of playing, many that fuse improvisation with composed-out music. Most notable is her partnership with baritone Jean Bernard Cerin. Their concerts feature folk and art music, storytelling, and social justice issues from the United States, Haiti, South America, the Philippines, India, European cultures, and beyond. A second generation American, Veena loves connecting with and learning more about her Filipino and Indian roots.

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