Sharpe World Music Ensemble at Mendelssohn

World music comes to Charlotte’s Web this weekend at 8 p.m., Saturday, April 14 at Mendelssohn PAC, 415 N. Church St.

Tom Sharpe’s music is a percussive symphony—a sonic and visual feast for the senses. A classically-trained musician, Tom has dramatically blended his orchestral background with world music instrumentation and cinematic imagery to create an experience that invites the listener into the heart of the musical moment—wildly emotional and technically precise, with a gutsy edge of percussive frenzy and tribal ritual.

Weaving together powerful elements of sound and rhythm, Tom Sharpe is equally proficient on a vast array of percussion and keyboard instruments. Seamlessly blending genres from Middle Eastern, African, orchestral and rock music, Tom moves between traditional instrumentation and electronics with ease and precision. Sharpe is an internationally recognized, critically acclaimed artist. His compositions have won many awards, including the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and the Broadjam World Music Contest. A graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy, he received his bachelor’s and master’s of music from DePaul University. His high energy, passion and emotion, combined with superb musicality, leaves audiences amazed and inspired.

His debut CD Like Setting Myself on Fire was released to critical acclaim in 2002. The title track of the CD was voted “Grand Prize Winner—World Music Song of the Year” by the John Lennon Songwriting Contest. “Trance-formation,” another album track, received honors as one of three finalists in the same category. Sharpe has also been honored as a finalist in the USA Songwriting Competition and the Unisong International Songwriting Competition.

Sharpe will be joined on stage by a violinist and a cellist.

Tickets are $15 in advance, $18 at the door. Tickets are available at Rockford Area Arts Council, 713 E. State St., (815) 963-6765; The Postal Shoppe, Edgebrook Center, (815) 397-7301 and 2205 S. Perryville, (815) 484-0940; The Kilt & Clover, 1414 N. Main St., (815) 962-5458; or by mail with check and SASE, 10928 N. Main, Rockton, IL 61072. For Web information, call (815) 964-2238.

from the April 11-17, 2007, issue

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