10/21 Yerko Lorca & Kuan Yin │Spain

Island Stage|10/21 (Sat.) 14:30
Hear the calls of the African kora and the lyre


Yerko Lorca is a composer and musician who plays the kora (African harp) and the Tartessian lyre. His music has been heard in Europe, the Americas, and Asia. He has released three albums: 21 Strings, Sankofa, and Sonambe. His music is said to have the power to touch the innermost reaches of the soul.

Yerko Lorca comes from a family of musicians. His focus is on ancient musical instruments from around the world, carrying on traditions and blessings. He has independently released three albums. Instruments he plays include the African kora, the Tartessian lyre, and a number of percussion instruments (such as the drums, conga, bongos, dundun, djembe, bodhran, and ocean drum). The Tartessian lyre is the oldest instrument discovered to date by archaeologists on the Iberian Peninsula. Its carved image can be seen on a funerary stele, the Estela de Luna, which was unearthed in the region. The world’s first replica of the instrument is none other than the one played by Yerko, and he also happens to be the only professional musician on the musical archaeology team that is studying the stele.

Yerko arranges his music to carry on the legacy of traditional instruments through his personal modern style, which is elegant and full of feeling. Yerko has learned the kora from the contemporary kora master Toumani Diabate and the traditional kora guru Mamadou Kouyate, both of whom are from Mali. The narrator has learned his story-telling technique from Djeliba Baba of Los Angeles, California.

Giving a fresh feel to the archaic, Yerko will team up with Taiwanese musician Kuan Yin in the performance of lyre music accompanied by vocals from ages past.

Lectures @ Tents|10/20 (Fri.) 14:00
Legends from Antiquity: The Ancient Mediterranean Lyre and the World’s Oldest Song

The lyre that Yerko plays is none other than the world’s only Tartessian lyre. He will share the legend of the Tartessian lyre and introduce other forms of Mediterranean lyres and the world’s oldest surviving complete musical composition, the Seikilos.