The Gershman Y, 401 S Broad St
Sound. Dance. Design. Solo identities unite in a creative common language as ARTolerance lights up the stage. Udi Bar-David, Rolando Morales Matos, Mehdi Saeedi, and Chloe Perkes transform in performance, knitting together multihued threads of culture, religion, and genre into a single, stunning tapestry.
Embodying differing viewpoints with physical distance, the artists weave and merge, coming together through multi-layered artistic dialogue. Don’t miss this groundbreaking approach to dialogue and conflict resolution on stage.
Udi Bar-David, cello
Rolando Morales Matos, percussion
Mehdi Saeedi, graphic designer
Chloe Perkes, dancer
Udi Bar-David is widely considered as one of the most versatile cellists in the world today. Equally at home as a classical cellist and an innovative improviser of music of all genres, Udi has enjoyed performing on international stages with both classical and ethnic musicians from all over the world.
An acclaimed soloist, Udi performed with leading orchestras in Israel and recorded at the Jerusalem Music Center founded by Pablo Casals; served as the principal cellist in the International Youth Orchestra, the National Orchestra of New York, and with the American Ballet Theatre. He was a member of the Concerto Soloists of Philadlephia, and joined the Philadelphia Orchestra in 1987, of which he served on the Board of Directors and as the Artistic Coordinator for the Hear O Israel concert at the Core States Center. As a chamber musician, Udi has collaborated with Christoph Eschenbach, Leon Fleisher, Jaime Laredo, Rudolph Buchbinder and others, and taught at the Eastern Music Festival.
Inspired by visits to Arab, Jewish and Buddhist villages, in 2003, Udi became the founder, president, and artistic director of Intercultural Journeys, a non-profit organization based in Philadelphia which is committed to presenting performances, conferences, master classes, lectures, and other interactions that provide opportunities for musical dialogue and understanding among a variety of cultural traditions. He is now founder and director of ARTolerance.
Born and raised in San Juan, P.R., Rolando Morales-Matos began his musical studies at the prestigious performing-arts high school Escuela Libre de Música. He received his B.F.A. in music from Carnegie Mellon University, his M.A. from Duquesne University, and a Certificate of Professional Studies from Temple University.
He is a percussionist and assistant conductor with Disney's Lion King and performs and records regularly in New York City with various Latin jazz groups and chamber orchestras. He has recorded soundtracks for the films Failure to Launch and The Pink Panther and appears playing onscreen in the Disney movie Enchanted. Mr. Morales-Matos is a member of Ron Carter Foursight Jazz Quartet and is an extra percussionist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Philadelphia Orchestra.
He is the recipient of the 2006 Drum Magazine world beat percussionist-of-the-year award.
Mr. Morales-Matos, who also teaches at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City, joined the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music in 2001.
Chloe Perkes received her primary training from Deane Dance Center in Sacramento and the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance. While at SFCD, she performed works by William Forsythe, Jiri Kylian, and many San Francisco Bay Area choreographers.
Perkes spent three years dancing for the San Francisco based company The Foundry, directed by Alex Ketley, then joined the Sacramento Ballet for three seasons. While there she performed in various soloist and principal roles, including “Juliet” in Ron Cunningham’s Romeo and Juliet and “Russian Girl” in Serenade by George Balanchine.
In 2014 she co-founded Duende, an experimental dance and music company, in collaboration with Alyssa Weinburg and Gabriel Cabezas. In 2014, Pointe Magazine named her “Best of the Best” for her performance in Matthew Neenan’s Sunset, o639 Hours. She began guesting with BalletX in 2010 and joined full time in 2012.
Mehdi Saeedi is designer and artist based in Philadelphia who was born and raised in Tehran. His aesthetics have become a mainstay of design in many regions, especially in those using the Persian and Arabic scripts as their alphabet. His special focus and proficiency in typography and calligraphy lead him to be the expert in the shaping of letters informs and shapes (zoomorphic) in graphic design. Saeedi has taught in Iranian Universities as well as held international workshops to bring the beauty of art
and graphic design to those with different language backgrounds. He exhibited his works in more than 250 exhibitions and biennials worldwide, and has attended
numerous local and international competitions as a jury member and a speaker.
In 2013, he founded “First International Exhibition of Type Design”, as part of (Silver Cypress) The 3rd Biennial of Iranian Graphic Designers Society.
There are additionally several publications of Mehdi Saeedi collection as well as selections of artworks. The most recent one of those in 2013 was published with the title of “From Contour to Calligraphy." He has won dozens of prizes both locally and internationally, including:
Grand Prize, Exhibition of Visual Arts, Iran; First Prize, the 1st International Biennial of the Islamic World Poster, Iran; Top Award, 15th International Invitational Poster, Colorado, USA, 2007; Grand Prize, Taiwan International Poster Design Award, Taiwan, 2007; First Prize, the 1st Competition Best of Designing Self Logo, Tehran, Iran, 2008; Grand prize, “Five Stars Designers bant” International Invitational Poster Triennial Osaka, Japan, 2009; and Special Award, Taiwan International Design Award, Taiwan, 2013.
Saeedi is part-time faculty at Towson University in Maryland, USA.