LEIGH CLINE BIOGRAPHY


As a guitarist, Leigh Cline performs and records worldwide. He is the only non-Greek to professionally play Pontic music.

Leigh has lived in Greece and worked with some of that country’s leading musicians: the renowned Cretan singer and lyra player Nikos Xilouris; Kostikas Tsakalidis, the legendary master of Pontic/Black Sea Kemenche (lyra); and Chrysanthos, the finest exponent of Pontic singing. In addition, Leigh has played with every major Pontic musician and singer including Gogos, Stathis & Sophia Nikolaidi, Mihalis Kaliontzidis, Giorgos Dimitriadis, Nikos Tsimahidis, Thanasis Tsoleridis, Panayiotis Aslanidis, Polios Papagiannidis, Giorgos Amarantidis and many others. He has also played with various members of the Halkias, Soukas and Zervas musical families of Epirus, as well as with singers such as Yiota Lydia, Ilias Klonaridis, Stratos Dionysiou, Annoula Vassiliou, Stelios Perpiniadis and many other Laika, Roumeli, Thessaly and Greek Island performers. For many years he worked with Yannis Antos, Vassilis Tsitsanis' keyboard player.

Leigh has given lectures on Pontic music at universities. As well, Leigh, along with Pontic musicians who on occasion come to North America to perform for their own community, have together given workshops and demonstrations devoted solely to Pontic music.

Leigh’s interest in Pontic music comes as a result of his background as a performer and researcher in the North American folk scene, which included his work as Technical Director and World Music Researcher for the Toronto-based Mariposa Folk Festival.

As a music researcher, Leigh researched world music and dance for the First World’s Craft Exhibition, as well as many programs for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s radio and television networks. He designed the sound system for the National Ballet of Canada’s production of "Kraan Erg" by Yannis Xenakis.



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