The HABIBIS perform exquisite traditional music from Greece, Anatolia, Balkans and the Eastern Mediterranean..The haBiBis are Irine Vela (Laouto, bouzouki, guitar) Pascal Latra (vocals, baglama,percussion) Mulaim Vela (guitar). SARAY IIUMINADO plays new interpretations of Sevdah from Bosnia and Herzegovina and Jewish Sephardic music from the Balkans.
The haBiBis perform music with passion and intelligence, which can move a listener of whatever ancestry”. Doug Spencer ABC radio.
ARIA Award winners for Best World Music Album,“The haBiBis weave the guitar, oud and bouzouki with consummate ease, in wide chiming choruses”” Rolling Stone.
“The vocals of Pascal Latra are as sweet as nectar, as intoxicating as tsipouro, a spirit much stronger than ouzo”.
Saray Iluminado Formed in 2013, Saray Iluminado has swiftly become one of Melbourne’s most highly sought after world music ensembles, performing sell out shows at Melbourne’s theatre fortyfivedownstairs and featuring at festivals such as: the Cygnet Folk Festival in Tasmania and the Shir Madness Festival of Jewish Music .
The core of this group is the lead singer Nela’s distinctive voice and her intimate knowledge of Sevdah and Bosnian and Herzegovinian cultural customs. Violinist Ernie Gruner brings to the ensemble a wealth of skills in Sephardic, Klezmer, East European and Gypsy music. Multi-instrumentalists Kelly Dowall and William Thompson give it the final touch with their passion for Mediterranean, Balkan and Middle Eastern musical vocabularies. Saray Iluminado is the first ensemble to seriously put the Bosnian and Herzegovinian Sevdah music on the Australasian world music map and shed light on the four cultural influences that are integral to its developement: the Slavic, the Ottoman, the Mediterranean and the Jewish.
In 2015, only a year after the ensemble formation, the members of Saray Iluminado were recipients of the Graduate Mentorships Program funded by the State Government, the Victorian College of the Arts and Melbourne Conservatorium of Music. This grant enabled the group to record their first album of traditional Sevdah and Sephardic repertoire titled “Nightingles in the Rose Garden.” now available as a CD or digitally through bandcamp.