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Collaborations – Thursday, August 12-2010

by on Aug.07, 2010, under Concerts, Events, Music

A new venue, a new collaboration and much excitement is planned for August 12th – 8:00pm – 10:00pm.

You are invited to join Paul Plimley, Tommy Babin, Phil Emerson, Victoria Gibson, T Crane and guests at the Auditorium of the Jules Verne School, located at 5445 Baillie Street (between Oak and Cambie off 41st Ave), Vancouver, BC.

COLLABORATIONS will usher in a series of projects directed by
…PAUL PLIMLEY with musicians TOMMY BABIN, VICTORIA GIBSON and PHIL EMERSON. Guests include Poet T Crane.

“An improvisational feast sure to stimulate on a molecular level!” posted T Crane in his facebook event invitation.

Other poets will also be appearing to interact with the real-time improvisation of the musical ensemble.

COLLABORATIONS is a part of L’ÉTHÉÂTRE, a summer festival that celebrates cultural multidisciplinary experience.

L’ÉTHÉÂTRE runs from the 5th of July until the 15th of August, featuring films, live performances and visual art produced by Visions Ouest Productions.

Tickets are available in advance or at the door. Check the official websitewww.rendez-vousvancouver.com for more information.

Here are some photos of Paul, Tommy and Phil taken from their performance as part of the Olympic Cultural Events on Granville Island.

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The piano trio

by on Jul.16, 2010, under Concerts, Events, Media, Music, Photography

The piano trio is where my friend Paul Plimley really lives. Yes, I can interest him in electronics; and he does play guitar, vibes and percussion — but he really lives his most joyous moments with bass and drums.Plimley-Guy-Niggli-Trio

The trio with Barry Guy, Paul Plimley and Lucas Niggli was one of my personal highlights from the 2010 Vancouver International Jazz Festival. They reached the highest levels of improvisation in ensemble performance where they meshed into a texture of beauty and complexity that shone with emotion.

Lucas Niggli is a Swiss drummer who plays with style and delicate strength. He stretches the boundaries of percussion while playing in the pocket for the band. This balancing act displays the greatness of a drummer; too much steady time keeping and the innovative spark fades, too much of stretching one’s own personal boundaries and the connection with the ensemble is lost.

The photos show the level of communication and emotion present in the Ironworks as each of these expert musicians wholeheartedly joined their considerable individual talents into a cohesive whole.

Barry Guy (below) is a bass player living in Switzerland, who plays with Lucas often. This evening of music allowed him to display many extended techniques and timbres. He played with intelligence, skill and unrepentant emotion. His composition, Fixed, Fragmented, Fluid; had been played as one of the festival opening works in a larger ensemble that included this trio. That was structured improv, but this was free and he was able to fly with his fingers and bow with authority.

There was a Canadian pianist who completed the trio named Paul Plimley. I must admit to being biased when I write about Paul, but I have seen him play in Vancouver many times, and grace the stage of the Ironworks with other trios. This was one of the best performances I have ever witnessed from the maestro. The combination of Barry Guy and Lucas Niggli challenged, supported, encouraged and battled with Paul in the most delightful way possible. There was always a spirit of fun and several times the joy crackled in the air like electricity.

I was a photographer that evening, soundless and motionless focusing on the light and motion as I was transported by the music.

There are other photos of a larger ensemble concert featuring these three musicians taken by Chris Cameron posted on the Coastal Jazz website here.

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Going to NY

by on Jun.06, 2010, under Design, Events, Media, Music, Projects, Technology

Guru Manala

Guru Mandala -- Victoria Gibson

EMPAC — Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York.

The Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media & Performing Arts Center

My application to attend the summer intensive workshop has been accepted. August will find me in New York at one of the most advanced media arts centres in the world learning sophisticated control technologies. This workshop is intensive, going from 10am-10pm for 7 days on campus in residency.

LIVE.MEDIA + PERFORMANCE.LAB

8/16 – 8/22

The workshop addresses emerging and professional art practitioners, scientists, researchers, and students from different backgrounds in performance and new media committed to sharing their interest in developing a deeper understanding of composing work focused on real time, interactive or time-based experiences and multidisciplinary collaborative processes (video, sound processing, projection design, lighting, choreography and directing).

This workshop will assist me in realizing my Immersive Environment Instrument (IEI) and possibly lead to collaborations with other media artists that attend. An opportunity that has come along at exactly the right time to help me create my vision requires some pre-production consideration.

A Macbook Pro looms in my future, but I will still try to program and control my sensor array with Ubuntu.

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Victoria with Mud Bay Blues

by on Mar.13, 2010, under Concerts, Events, Music

The Waldorf Hotel pub is quite a nice venue and it was really fun to play with the Mud Bay Blues Band. This band has been around for many years and the players have a smooth familiarity with each others playing styles.

A friend of mine came down to enjoy the music and took a few photos – check them out here. It was very generous of him to document the event as he usually specializes in nature photos and not people.  I guess we were down to earth enough for him to accept us as part of the scenery.

This Friday night was really fun, as I had the opportunity to play my original music that is closest to my Blues heritage.  I hope I have another chance to play with this group and I will post future events in advance.

Tonight Paul is playing at Performance Works as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

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Anthony Braxton’s Sonic Genome Project

by on Jan.27, 2010, under Concerts, Events, Music

There are no words that can express the feeling of the concert that will be happening at The Roundhouse Community Center on Sunday, January 31, 2010 starting at noon — you will have to be there to hear the music. Money is no object, as it is a free 8 hour long concert that brings together Anthony Braxton’s 12+1 tet and an ensemble of approximately 50 of Vancouver’ improvising musicians.

With Anthony Braxton reeds/composition, Taylor Ho Bynum cornet/trumpet/flugelhorn/bass trumpet, Nicole Mitchell flutes, Andrew Raffo Dewar, James Fei reeds, Steve Lehman saxophones, Sara Schoenbeck bassoon, Jessica Pavone violin/alto viola, Mary Halvorson electric guitar, Reut Regev trombone, Jay Rozen tuba, Carl Testa double bass/bass clarinet, Aaron Siegel drums/percussion/vibes.

The concert is presented as part of the PuSH Festival in association with The Coastal Jazz and Blues Society. The Coastal website has a lot of information about the Genome Project world performance premiere on their site. The image that appears here is linked from the Coastal site as I have taken no photos yet. According to the press release, this piece was conceived as a recording project and this is the first live performance. A CD of the recorded Genome Project is already available.

I am excited and honoured to have been accepted into this ensemble and I will be playing with computer and vocals. There are already several guitar players, including my friend Paul Plimley, so I think this instrumentation will be more useful in creating unique textures.This is the largest instrumental ensemble I have ever been in, although I have sung with larger choirs, this will be a once in a lifetime experience. Please come down sometime during the 8 hours of music to enjoy the space and be part of the energy.

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Phil Minton and the Feral Choir

by on Jan.25, 2010, under Concerts, Events, Music, Photography

The Vancouver New Music Society brought Phil Minton to lead the Feral Choir, a group made up of local volunteer singers. This program of  improvisational vocal workshops leading to a performance has been popular at locations all over the world and there are samples of audio and video on the official site from several sites in Europe and Australia. We were very lucky that he chose to return to Vancouver to share some of his expertise with us.

The last time I saw Mr. Minton in Vancouver was with Maggie Nichols, a longtime collaborator, who is also from the UK. As I was doing my usual Jazz Festival volunteer shift as Crew Chief at the Ironworks, I had the opportunity to share in the fun as the duo warmed up in the green room. The show was very inspiring and opened up vocal areas that I had not previously concentrated on.

0078-Phil_Minton-sm

Phil Minton in action

I was looking forward to the workshops and performances and I signed up early. There is no audition and Phil’s workshops are open to anyone who wants to sing, so there were many people attending who I do not know. Singers I did know included Kate Hammett-Vaughn, Carol Sawyer, Soressa Gardener and DB Boyco among others.

0131-feral-choir_sm

Phil Minton and his Vancouver Feral Choir 2010

I did take photos of the rehearsal such as Phil in action and the pre-performance  at Ironworks, but my daughter, Jhayne Holmes, took this group photo (above) with my camera. The low light conditions are difficult for the Nikon D50 with the kit lens — we will see what her newer Nikon photos are like.

There are more photos to come, but I will send them to the performers through Vancouver New Music as I did not get specific permission to post them.  Perhaps they will post and I will link.

I did record the concert with my Zoom H4 and  Vancouver New Music recorded as well. One of the choir members was recording at the rehearsal for CBC broadcast, so it might be part of a radio show soon. There may be some sonic samples of the amazing choral sounds that were made today.

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Charlie Haden at VIFF

by on Oct.25, 2009, under Events, Films, Music

Charlie Haden is Paul’s friend, and I had the opportunity to meet him and listen to him play in Paul’s studio about three years ago. His wife, Ruth, is a wonderful singer and we chatted at the session. I was looking forward to seeing them again.

As Paul is my duo partner in You Are Here and I am his recording studio engineer of choice, we went to the film “Charlie Haden: Rambling Boy” together on Thu, Oct 15th 6:30pm.

Official image linked to the Vancouver Interntional Film Festival Site.

Official image linked to the Vancouver Interntional Film Festival Site.

(continue reading…)

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