When I was a kid, my parents – composer Alexander Zhurbin and poet/vocalist Irena Ginzburg – would often perform shows together. These shows would typically consist of three parts – first, my dad would come out to play piano and sing his many hits and banter with the public. Eventually he would invite me to the stage and we’d play a song or two – and for the final act, my mom would come out and sing a set, with my dad and I as her backing band. Occasionally the format would expand to include video materials and backing tracks and special guests, but the essence and core band has been the same for roughly forty years.
On Thursday, April 27th at 7:30, at the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center, we performed a twist on the format by inviting my parents to join us on stage as they celebrated their 45th anniversary. We opened with a set by our ensemble Trio Fadolín (featuring violinist Sabina Torosjan, cellist Valeriya Sholokhova, and me Ljova on fadolín), performing music written by my dad and I; then we were joined by my dear wife and vocalist Inna Barmash, clarinettists Sam Sadigursky and Zisl Slepovitch; and we closed with a set with my parents and this expanded ensemble, playing and singing some of their old and new songs.
I feel enormously lucky to have this musical family, and to have the trust of Lincoln Center to put a show like this together. It was important. It was full circle. So many familiar faces were there — half of my world was there. Thank you for coming.
I am full of gratitude to the wonderful staff of Lincoln Center, who invited me back to the beautiful Atrium for a fourth time, and who trusted in me to put this together. I am grateful that my parents received some recognition for their lifetime’s work on a New York stage. At last. When we moved to New York in April 1990, my dad was 44 and I was 11 — flash forward, I am now 44 and our youngest son is 11. I have lived here 33 years and feel so fortunate to call New York home.
I feel ridiculously lucky to have an incredible community of musician friends to share the stage with and be inspired by, all with their special personalities and talents. This show was everything — it was my world in 90 minutes. Thank you all — I am overwhelmed, humbled and grateful.
Below, sharing some photos taken by the photographer Lawrence Sumulong / ©Lincoln Center: