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Sabin Bikandi and the Kukai dantza konpainia, honored at the 2015 Max Awards for “Gelajauziak”


Proud winners with awards in hand
Proud winners with awards in hand


Musician, composer and arranger, Sabin Bikandi, founder of the Aiko Taldea, is one the winners at the 2015 Max Performing Arts Awards that were presented yesterday at a gala in Barcelona.  Bikandi won the award for best musical composition for a stage show for the score of “Gelajauziak,” a work performed by the Kukai Dance Company that was also awarded as best group.  Alain Maya, Eneko Gil, Ibon Huarte, Jon Maya and Urko Mitxelena are Kukai on stage.  Both award winners are well-known in the Diaspora in countries like Argentina and the US.  Zorionak!

Barcelona, Catalonia.   Sabin Bikandi, along with Xabier Erkizia, musician who also participated in the score, competed for the best musical composition for a stage show along with Iñaki Salvador, another Basque musician, for his work “Zazpi aldiz elkur, Mikel Laboa Elurretan” and Catalan, Alberto Garcia Demstres for “L’Eclipsi.”  In his acceptance speech, Sabin Bikandi made special mention of his family and co-author, Xabier Erkizia, Jon Maia and all of his colleagues in Kukai, as well as for all of the women who have “accompanied him and danced with him.”  Bikandi finished his speech by thanking drummers and with a tribute to this “old trade of playing and dancing.”

GELAJAUZIAK-promo from Kukai Dantza Konpainia on Vimeo.

A new look at traditional dance

The composition by Sabin Bikandi and Xabier Erkizia put music to Gelajauziak, a show that debuted last year's March. It was originally thought to be a street presentation, inspired by many social dances from the Basque Country, but now taking a new look at them thanks to Catalan Choreographer, Cesc Gelabert.  It was presented all over the Basque Country and also toured in various cities in Argentina.  Last year it was awarded the Best Show in Euskadi at the Umore Azoka in Leioa.

Sabin Bikandi (Galdakao, 1965) is a Doctor in Ethnomusicology from the University of London.  He has been awarded the Award of Honor in an advanced degree from the Conservatory in Donostia-San Sebastian as well as honorable mention from the Bilbao Conservatory of Chamber Music.  He has a Masters in Ethnomusicology from Goldsmiths’ College in London and is a Superior Professor of Music.  He has worked in various centers as a teacher of traditional dance.  He has also directed Txistulari magazine from 1992-95.  In his role as a musician, his work with the Axlor group as a drummer in the Municipal Ban of Txistularis in Bilbao as well as a founding member of the Aiko Taldea stand out.  As a composer and arranger his work covers all types and styles of genres, always in the vicinity of txistu music.  He is also a researcher of traditional Basque dance, and a supporter of the Dantzaldi Ibiltaria Project aimed at teaching traditional dance to adults. 

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