ali & the thieves present
LEONARD COHEN KOANS
The poetry, prose and songs of Leonard Cohen - A musical celebration
Leonard Cohen Koans is the spectacular musical celebration of the spirit of enigmatic Canadian icon, Leonard Cohen, and his astonishing 60+ year career spanning literature, art and music. Splicing songs with his poetry and prose, ali & the thieves weave a new pathway into your experience of this glorious Poet of the Holy Sinners.
Part-concert and part-homage, Leonard Cohen Koans is performed by incredibly versatile Sydney vocalist Ali Hughes supported by her masterful jazz/blues band The Thieves. Led by highly sought after musical director Daryl Wallis, Ali & The Thieves perform 16 of Cohen’s undeniable standards and lesser known gems, including his ode to Janis Joplin ‘Chelsea Hotel #2’, ‘Sisters of Mercy’, ‘Anthem’ and ‘If it be your will’, the irrefutably seductive ‘Dance me to the end of love’, and his mythic masterpiece ‘Suzanne’.
With three members of this band having family roots firmly planted in the Central West region, playing their internationally acclaimed show to City Hall is somewhat of a homecoming!
Drummer Toby Hall, grew up in Bathurst and learned his craft at the Central West Conservatorium under the strict and inspiring guidance of his step father/bassist Henry Bialowas and drum teacher Jon Collins, playing in community shows with the New City Big Band, the RSL Concert Band and the Carillion Theatrical Society, appearing at BMEC way back when it was the Civic Centre.
Lead singer and backing vocalist, Ali Hughes and Gerard Carroll, knew that they shared a common connection with nearby Lithgow; their mothers were both born and raised in the small arms town, attending La Salle and St Pat’s schools. But it wasn’t until they had been working on this show together for a number of years that Ali & Gerard discovered that they are also cousins - related by marriage!!
In its seventh year of presentation, this 90min narrative concert has hooked audiences from Sydney to Noosa, and from New York to Dublin. And now more than ever, with the recent passing of the legendary and enigmatic Leonard Cohen, audiences are looking to re-connect with the live experience of his extraordinary music.
Inspiring, passionate, intimate and sincere, Leonard Cohen Koans gives you another chance to savour the creative spirit with which he so exquisitely courted the world.
‘it’s hard to imagine yet another cover of ‘Hallelujah’ making an impact, but the arrangement and delivery by Hughes and bassist Michael Galeazzi is overwhelmingly good.’
Judy Barrass, Critical Mass, Noosa
‘exceptionally well-crafted…***1/2 out of ****’
Michael Giltz, Huffington Post
‘…exudes a narrative that makes it more than just a collection of covers.’
Kimberley Lew, Emerging Musical Theater, New York