Episode 8: Improvising & Creative Risk Taking w/ Sophie Lukacs

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Learning a new instrument can be a daunting task for anyone, especially when it’s an instrument that isn’t seen regularly in the Western World.

Our guest today, Sophie Lukacs did just that in her early twenties when she was first exposed to the kora.

After studying with various teachers in Burkina Faso, Paris and Mali she got out of her comfort zone and started improvising during performances. This unlocked a new level of creativity and opened musical doors she didn’t know were there.

For anyone who has ever wanted to dive into new musical exploration (or for anyone who has taken the plunge and has felt like a fish out of water), this is an episode for you to feel both inspired and seen, through Sophie’s story.

About Sophie Lukacs

Hailing from Montreal by way of Budapest, Hungary, Sophie Lukacs is a kora player, singer and composer. Trained on the violin in classical music from a young age, a chance trip to Burkina Faso in her early twenties completely changed her musical direction, and her life. It's there she discovered the kora: a 21-stringed harp-lute from the Mandingue empire. She began lessons shortly after, and travelled to Paris for a master class with kora legend Toumani Diabaté. When he invited her to study with him in Bamako, Mali, she packed her bags and never looked back. Sophie spent seven years in Mali (learning fluent Bambara along the way), studying with kora masters Toumani Diabaté, Ballake Sissokos' family, and two years with the Ensemble Instrumentale du Mali. 

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