~ News ~

Some of you have been waiting quite a while to hear this news: After several months of playing with our friend, Eric Ray, we're proud to announce that he has officially joined Orkestar Bez Ime's ranks as our accordionist! Eric has a long history with OBI that goes back to his teenage years: He was a student of our former accordionist's, Dee Langley, and a voice student of Natalie's before heading off to the Duquesne University Tamburitzans in Pittsburgh. We're glad he decided to move back home after school. We've been having a great time working with him in OBI and look forward to the future! You can learn more about Eric on our Bio page. (photo by Aleksandra Radich)...
Posted by Orkestar Bez Ime
If it wasn't for sure before, it certainly is now: Orkestar Bez Ime is officially a band of composers! Thanks to OBI receiving the peer-nominated Minnesota Emerging Composer Award from the American Composers Forum, we're unveiling six new compositions Saturday, March 29 at Celtic Junction. You'll hear the new folk-influenced material mixed in with the traditional dance tunes you've come to know and love. The show starts at 7:30pm (doors open at 7pm) and costs $10 in advance or $13 at the door. Come celebrate with us! More context in our "official" press release below: OBI UNVEILED: How a Balkan Party Band Became a Band of Folk Composers   Twin Cities, MN—It’s not every day that a grant is dropped in your lap without applying for it. It’s even more unusual when it’s a grant for work you don’t usually do. But...
Posted by Orkestar Bez Ime
Some of you may have heard OBI talk about working with Joe Chvala and the Flying Foot Forum on a residency at Carleton College last winter. Over the past few years, Joe has been creating a unique and exciting show based on Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass (audience participation!). The residency at Carleton had members of OBI participating as musicians, actors, and dancers in a wonderfully modular version of what will later form into a fully staged Alice in Wonderland at the Ordway next spring. Together, OBI and the Flying Foot Forum are presenting excerpts from Alice at The Cowles Center September 20-21, 8pm. OBI will also be playing a few songs from the repertoire we learned last summer in Serbia, and boy, is it hot! Check out our Shows listing for info or check The Cowles Center website for tickets. *** PLEASE NOTE: Due to tech rehearsals, OBI...
Posted by Natalie

23 May 2013

Changes in OBI

After over a decade of participation within Orkestar Bez Ime, we announce that Dee Langley is leaving to pursue other endeavors. We wish her well as she begins this new chapter in her musical life....
Posted by Orkestar Bez Ime
Hey everyone.  This is Scott here, guitarist for OBI, and I figured it was about time that one of us finally posted something regarding our amazing trip to Serbia.  We were there for two weeks in July, attending a cultural immersion camp that focused on Romany (Gypsy) music and culture.  The camp is called Amala School and was founded in 2001. It runs only two weeks in the summer and usually there are no more than 10 students attending at one time. The camp is located in Valjevo, which is about 200 km southwest of Belgrade.  So the flight itself, from Minneapolis to Belgrade, is about 16 hours (For a couple band members, because of delays, the trip was muuuuch longer).  Upon arrival, though, Valjevo is beautiful, with red clay roofs all across the city and a small mountain range rising to the east.  Our accommodations were a three-story house in which...
Posted by Scott
If you've been following us on Facebook, you will have heard that the episode we filmed for MN Original was finally aired in October! We're quite excited to have had the opportunity to be featured alongside two vibrant fine artists in the Twin Cities arts community. You can check out the two music videos (Ramo Ramo & Daichovo) on our Music page or, better yet, check out the entire episode on mnoriginal.org (Ramo Ramo is at the end of the episode; Daichovo is a web extra). Be sure to also check out the web extra we did for Practice Spaces, where you get to learn a little bit about us in our "behind the scenes" environment. Many thanks to tpt/MN Original for inviting OBI to be a part of this wonderful series that is made possible by the ever-awesome Legacy Amendment! Heads-up to our 3rd Thursday regulars: OBI will not be performing at Black Dog on November 15, as...
Posted by Natalie
If you're new to Orkestar Bez Ime and haven't been following why we're (peeing our pants) excited about this summer, let me help you catch up: We received a McKnight Fellowship for Performing Musicians last year, and rather than blowing it on bills and whatnot, we decided it would be better used for enrolling the band in the Amala School in Valjevo, Serbia, where we get to study Romany ("gypsy") music and culture for a glorious two weeks! "But where does that leave OBI's two awesome monthly series?" you ask. Well. We're fortunate in that we have so many talented musical friends who so kindly agreed to step in for us while we're in Eastern Europe. YAY! We hope you'll enjoy them as much as we do (we wish we could join you, but, you know, we'll be in Serbia). So, for the next three series dates, may I introduce to you the...
Posted by Natalie
As many of you know, Orkestar Bez Ime won the McKnight Fellowship for Performing Musicians last year. We decided to apply those funds to study abroad at Amala, a Romany cultural immersion school in Serbia. We're so thankful to the McKnight Foundation for making a huge dent in the cost of that travel-study experience, and now it's time to ask our "Three Fs"--friends, families, and fans--to help raise the last bit: We have paid for the plane tickets and a good chunk of tuition, but we still need to raise the remaining tuition in order for all six members of OBI to study there and bring back lots of wonderful new material and information to you. We've established two great opportunities to do that: 1) For our supporters based in the Twin Cities, we're holding a fundraising performance at Celtic Junction on May 12. OBI starts playing at 8pm, but if you come...
Posted by Natalie
You may have heard us say it--and we've certainly heard you agree!--but boy, was it time for a new website. We're very excited to unleash our brand new design, courtesy of Renaissance Jane (conveniently, Natalie's design company) and the development team behind Net Acceleration. You'll find all sorts of new features, including videos from our live shows, a music player you can turn on and off, a feed from our Twitter account, more purchasing options for our merch, an OBI blog (you are here), detailed event listings, and so much more. And for those of you who are relatively new to Orkestar Bez Ime, we even have a special spot for you to learn all about this whole "Rogaria" thing we keep referencing. We hope you'll take some time to poke around and let us know what you think! We'd be remiss if we didn't acknowledge the McKnight Foundation for its...
Posted by Natalie
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