current state 2015: human actors

Finger-crossed, some interesting news ahead re. machine musicians (and other technological detritus)… but, in the meantime, here’s another update on the activities of io 0.0.1 beta++’s (human) colleagues (it’s been a while since the last one).

Han-earl Park

Han-earl Park left Brooklyn at the end of 2013. The last few months in New York were marked by, among others, performances with Andrea Parkins, Anna Webber, Gerald Cleaver, and Evan Parker. In November, as a kind of leaving party, Kyoko Kitamura and Josh Sinton organized Gowanus Company.

Released by SLAM Productions, ‘Anomic Aphasia’ (SLAMCD 559) documents two of Park’s New York-based projects: the ensemble Eris 136199 with Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky, and Metis 9, a playbook of improvisative tactics, devised in collaboration with Sikora and Josh Sinton. The album has been described as “beautiful noise” (KFJC 89.7 FM), “ein glorioser Bastard aus Noise und süßer Träumerei” (Bad Alchemy), and given “☆☆☆☆½” by All About Jazz.

Back in Europe, Park has been working with several musicians: performing with Dominic Lash and Corey Mwamba as part of the Tubers MiniFestival (Manchester); with Hilary Jeffery, Andrea Parkins and Simon Rose at Ma Thilda (Berlin); with Justin Yang and Caroline Pugh at the Sonic Arts Research Centre (Belfast); and others. He has also made trips back to New York to perform with Tom Rainey, with Mette Rasmussen, Michael Foster and Pascal Niggenkemper, as part of Eris 136199 (with Nick Didkovsky and Catherine Sikora), with Andrew Drury, and with Mike Pride and Catherine Sikora. The recording ‘A Little Brittle Music’ with Dominic Lash and Corey Mwamba, will be released in November.

In December, Park’s current working trio with Dominic Lash and Mark Sanders will be joined by Caroline Pugh for a Culture Ireland funded tour with performances in Birmingham, Bristol and London. He will also be back in Brooklyn later in December to perform with Ingrid Laubrock, and with Nick Didkovsky and Josh Sinton.

Bruce Coates

Bruce Coates has been busy performing in many situations including performing Improvisations and Piece for Bill Viola by Chris Cundy as part of the Cheltenham Improvisers Orchestra (Wilson Art Gallery, Cheltenham); with Paul Dunmall, Corey Mwamba, Seth Bennett, Walt Shaw and Mark Sanders, and with Alan Jenkins, Lorin Halsall and Walt Shaw, as part of the Subjects and Structures exhibition by Andrew Coates and Walt Shaw (Artsmith LIVE Gallery, Derby); and as part of Steve Troman’s Days of May Project with Ruth Angell, Sid Peacock (Cafe Ort, Birmingham).

Coates’ regular ensembles and projects include South Leicestershire Improvisers Ensemble, a monthly ensemble of shifting line-ups (Beerhouse, Market Harborough, and Quad Studios, Leicester); A, B and C (with Lee Allatson and Stewart Brackley); and CHA (with Christopher Hobbs and Virginia Anderson).

Coates also participated in Centrifuge’s Developing an Aesthetic symposium in 2015 (Crewe).

Both the performances as part of Walt Shaw’s Subjects and Structures exhibition, and A, B and C have a recording forthcoming.

Franziska Schroeder

Barely Cool (PFMCD090) CD cover. Barely Cool (PFMCD090). Artwork by Arthur Lacerda. (Copyright 2015 pfMENTUM)

Barely Cool (PFMCD090). Artwork by Arthur Lacerda. © 2015 pfMENTUM.

Just released by pfMENTUM: Franziska Schroeder’s CD, ‘Barely Cool’ (PFMCD090) with Marcos Campello and Renato Godoy. Recorded in Rio de Janeiro. The recording was made during Schroeder’s ethnographic research of free improvisation in Brazil.

Aiming to apply strategies of listening taken from network performance to the context of theater, Schroeder recently received an Arts and Humanities Research Council impact grant for ‘Distributed Listening—socially engaged art,’ a collaboration between the Sonic Arts Research Centre, Queen’s University, the Lyric Theatre (Belfast), Theatre company 42 Street (Manchester), The Science Festival Northern Ireland, and The Young Vic (London):

Enabling theatre practitioners and participating communities to engage in network music performance strategies/technologies (‘distributed listening’), normally only available in HE institutions.

The project team will develop a custom-designed app for mobile devices (smart phones) that allows young community participants to explore various listening strategies.

We have teamed up with two theatre companies, the Lyric Theatre, Belfast and 42nd Street, Manchester. 42nd Street is a young people’s mental health charity providing innovative services to young people with mental health problems. Both companies regularly work with community participants, practising ‘socially engaged arts’, a form of active citizenship, art that intends to effect social change, that is artist-led and participant focussed. The theatre companies have identified 20 young adults each who, during 8 weeks workshops will learn to use the new app in order to create a creative theatre piece based on the idea of ‘distributed listening’.

In addition, Schroeder has a new collaboration with concert harpist Tanya Houghton. They will premiere four new works for saxophone, harp and electronics at SARC, Belfast, 17 December, 2015.

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