Posts Tagged ‘Alice Coltrane’

NY, Philadelphia & Miami Celebrate Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda

Monday, September 24th, 2018

The Sai Anantam Singers perform at The Ecstatic World of Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda, part of Red Bull Music Academy Festival, at Knockdown Center, 52-19 Flushing Ave. in Maspeth, NY, US on 21 May 2017. // P-20170522-02367 // Usage for editorial use only // Please go to for further information. //

This October, Alice Coltrane’s Sai Anantam Singers will be performing in Philidelphia, New York City and Miami, as part of small East Coast tour.

The shows are in partnership with the longstanding and culturally relevant institutions and festivals such as BAM’s “Next Wave Festival” in Brooklyn, Fringe Art’s “October Revolution” in Philadelphia, and The Rhythm Foundation in Miami. For tickets and event details, please visit our page page, here.

Original members of Alice’s Ashram Singers, along with a number of special guests—including a rare appearance from Purusha Hickson, one of Alice’s very first students—will perform her ecstatic music backed by Surya Botofasina on keyboards and Joe Blaxx on drums (Dezron Douglas will join on bass at the shows in Philly and NY, too). At the NY show, filmmakers Vincent Moon and Priscilla Telmon will add to the performance with accompanying live video projections of scenes from the Ashram.

Alice Coltrane was a jazz innovator, composer, and bandleader who grew up playing gospel, classical, and jazz in Detroit. She was an exceptional musician before meeting husband and collaborator John Coltrane, to whom she was married for only four years before his death in 1967.

After a period of great personal suffering, Alice met guru Swami Satchidananda and traveled to India with him. Following a visit there, she had a vision to open an ashram, and bought 50 acres of land in Agoura Hills, California, on the outskirts of Los Angeles. There a multi-ethnic and multi-generational religious community grew around her.

Sundays were the high point of living in this very special and loving environment. Alice would lead the community in a powerful musical ceremony, mixing both gospel and Indian chant, to create music she wholly invented.

The ceremonies were intended to be participatory. Everyone is welcome to partake through singing, chanting, clapping, or however one feels comfortable. Lyrics of the songs (bhajans) will be included in each program.

For a short introduction to The Ashram Singers, here is a short video from last year’s Le Guess Who Festival, in The Netherlands:



Friday, February 2nd, 2018

On Sunday, February 11 at 1:00–6:00 p.m., MoMA PS1‘s Sunday Sessions will present an afternoon celebrating the legacy of Alice Coltrane in collaboration with her son, saxophonist Ravi Coltrane.

Alice Coltrane, also referred to as Swamini and Turiyasangitananda by her family and students, was a prolific composer, harpist, and keyboardist who dedicated the later years of her life to the Sai Anantam ashram she founded in 1983 in Agoura Hills, California. Featuring rare audio and video recordings from the extended Coltrane family’s private archive, the program, organized with us here at Luaka Bop, will also include discussion, presentations, performances by Kelsey Lu and Laraaji inspired by Alice’s music, and a workshop by Purushottoma Hickson, one of Alice’s first students, and an Elder of the Sai Anantam Ashram.

Thanks to Taja Creek for all her hard work in putting this together; Ravi Coltrane for allowing us to be part of this special day, Brandee Younger and Ashley Kahn for their participation, and to the wonderful Purushottoma Hickson.

All guests will be required to check their phone, camera, and any recording devices upon entry. Recording of all kind is strictly prohibited.

Tickets: $17 (MoMA Members $13). More information is available here.