Vocalist and composer Sophie Tassignon is known for her unique timbre and her beautifully intricate compositions and arrangements, as have been heard in both her solo project and the chamber quartet „Azolia“. Next to her all encompassing musical existence, Tassignon has a deep seated interest in cultures from around the world and fluency in a variety of languages, which she makes apparent on her upcoming solo release with RareNoise Records. In 2017, due to her work with Syrian refugees in Berlin, Sophie Tassignon decided to begin learning the Arabic language and to seek a deeper understanding of Arabic culture. This work has in turn led to the development of her newest project, „KHYAL“.

photo: Christian Betz

“Khyal” blends poetic Arabic texts with jazz traditions from Europe and North America. Each song performed by the group of six international Berlin-based musicians is centred around the words of Mohammad Mallak, a Syrian scriptwriter and playwright who resides between France and Germany, and acts as editor in chief of Saiedet Souria magazine. Stemming from the Arabic word for “imagination, “Khyal” can be translated as the ‘memory of and longing for something long gone’.

Sophie Tassignon’s “Khyal” is a musical meeting of cultures. This music represents the tolerance and acceptance of peoples from around the world regardless of background or belief system, and offers a glimpse into the beauty and artistry that can arise through cross-cultural collaborations.

“Khyal” will be premiered on Nov. 20th 2020 at the Syrian Centre for Women in Berlin.

Mohammad Mallak