MeiaMeia

“No one else has approached the berimbau with a view of [expanding]…the virtually limitless richness of the instrument.”

– Raul da Gama, World Music Report, May 13, 2017

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MeiaMeia was recorded by (from left to right): Gregory Beyer, Daniel Eastwood, Kyle Flens, Alexis C. Lamb, Christopher Mrofcza, Abigail Rehard, and Alexv Rolfe (not pictured).

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MeiaMeia (Portuguese for “half” “half” i.e. “half a dozen” of one, “half a dozen” of the other) is a twelve work chamber music cycle for an instrument called the Arcomusical, an elegant species of tunable berimbau handcrafted in the United States. The berimbau, commonly associated with the Afro-Brazilian martial game of Capoeira Angola, is but one member of the “bow” family of musical instruments found all over the world.

Composed between 2013 and 2015, MeiaMeia is the collaborative project of Gregory Beyer and Alexis Lamb, who met as professor and student (respectively) at the Northern Illinois University (NIU) School of Music. Through support from the NIU Undergraduate Artistry and Research Apprenticeship Program (UARAP), Beyer and Lamb worked intensely for two and a half years to develop the music.

Together they succeeded in creating a rich and sophisticated musical language that is like nothing ever before played on musical bows anywhere in the world. Performed by the ensemble, Projeto Arcomusical, the music is fresh, playful, rhythmic, colorful, and soulful. Everywhere Projeto Arcomusical performs, from the United States to Brazil to Africa, the music is met with accolades. Witnessing a performance of Projeto Arcomusical is a unique experience. The level of concentration, communication, and joy of chamber music performance is palpable.

Richly captured by first-rate audio engineer Dan Nichols of Aphorism Studios, the sounds of the Projeto Arcomusical on this recording will capture your attention and provoke your imagination from start to finish. MeiaMeia is released on Innova Recordings and available globally.

We dedicate this album to the great Naná Vasconcelos (1944-2016), the original inspiration for Arcomusical. Naná’s vision gave wings to the musical bow in a profound way that has left an indelible impact on multiple generations of bow musicians.


Live Videos of MeiaMeia Works

"um só" (2015)
Alexis C. Lamb

"Berimbau solo no. 1, "Home-ing" (2015)
Gregory Beyer

"Descobertas por pau e pedra" (2013)
Alexis C. Lamb

"Duo no. 5, "Alexis" (2013)
Gregory Beyer

"Palíndromo" (2013)
Alexis C. Lamb

Berimbau Trio no. 1: "Harmonia" (2013)
Gregory Beyer

"Caída de quatro" (2014)
Alexis C. Lamb

Berimbau Quartet no. 1: “Chip” (2014)
Gregory Beyer

"Mudança de onda" (2014)
Alexis C. Lamb

Berimbau Quintet no. 1: "Solkattu" (2014)
Gregory Beyer

"Apenas Seja" (2015)
Alexis C. Lamb

Berimbau Sextet no. 1: "Kora" (2015)
Gregory Beyer