I am in NYC working hard on the show with my collaborators.
Christina deRoos, my collaborator in the visual projection aspect of the show, made a video yesterday and posted it on Vimeo as a demo.
I hope you like it.
Music and Spoken Word – Improvised, Intense and Infused with fun!
A variety of spoken word artistry provided by:
Music provided by Paul Plimley, piano+guitar; Tommy Babin, upright bass; Phil Emerson, guitar and Victoria Gibson, notebook+vocals.
This event is part of a new summer festival presented by Visions Ouest Productions:
Un nouveau Rendez-vous d’été / A new Summer Rendez-vous
Jeudi 12 Août / Thurs. August 12, 2010
Auditorium Jules-Verne, Vancouver
5445 Baillie Street, Vancouver (at 37th Avenue, between Oak & Cambie,
close to Van Dusen Botanical Gardens). Skytrain Station 41st. Free parking.
Tickets : $16 presale online until 6 pm/ Prévente jusqu’à 18h00 ce soir
or $18 at the door
There are two more nights of the festival featuring:
Friday August 13, 8 pm:
Screening of (English subt.) – L’ENFANT PRODIGE / THE CHILD PRODIGY Luc Dionne
Admission: $10 Tickets sold online
Bande-annonce / trailer <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3a3UkDD5gs>
Saturday August 14 – THE CLOSING NIGHT
Screening of PICHÉ, ENTRE CIEL ET TERRE / PICHÉ: THE LANDING OF A MAN
(English subt.) – Sylvain Archambeault
Admission: $10 Tickets sold online
Followed at 10 pm by L’ÉTHÉÂTROPICAL with DJ Marc Fournier
Une célébration de l’été et un au-revoir à tous les artistes et bénévoles
qui ont participé à L’ÉTHÉÂTRE.
I will miss the extremely fun after party because I will be in New York city.
So you have to come to my show if you want to see me before I go.
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.
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.
My last shift as Crew Chief for the Ironworks is this Saturday, July 3 — come down and see two great shows: The Brad Turner Quartet at 8pm and The Michael Zilber Group at 11pm.
This time has been very busy for me and I have not been keeping up with my news posts. After the festival I will post photos, but as always, Chris Cameron documents the festival with precision and grace. His selected photos can be found on the Coastal Jazz website and the most current ones are here. This is the 25th anniversary of the festival and of Chris as the official photographer — his work has preserved “the decisive moment” (Henri Cartier-Bresson) of many festival performances. Cameron’s body of work is an enduring legacy that captures the emotions that resonate long after the vibrations in the air have stilled.
The highlights of the festival for me so far are: Fixed Fragmented Fluid, featuring a large ensemble under the direction of Barry Guy; Paul Plimley with Barry Guy and Lucas Niggli; The Mario Pavone Trio with Tony Malaby and Gerald Cleaver and the Unity Globe Orchestra.
I have heard and been inspired by many of these shows. I loved the energy of Hiromi and Stanley Clarke; John Scofield spoke to my blues heritage with his Piety Band; Mike Stern mellowed out and got ambient; outstanding moments of great playing at each one of my Ironworks shifts will be discussed in future posts.
Today and Sunday the music is open to the public with free concerts at the Roundhouse Community Centre Complex. I don’t want to miss any more of the music. Later!
Vocals have always been a large part of my performance practice and I have been working on developing even more techniques in vocal improvisation. Every Saturday at 10am, I am now practicing with the Voxy Choir, directed by Kate Hammett-Vaughn and Carol Sawyer. This ensemble offers workshops every week to stretch our performance preconceptions by introducing us to teachers outside of the mainstream of music.
Kate and I have known each other since I used to write reviews and the Women In Music column for Nite Moves magazine in the late 1980’s. More recently, I recorded, mastered and co-produced her CD, So Lucky To Be Me. Kate is a great vocal teacher and very well connected in the Vancouver and Canadian jazz community. This enables her to bring in a variety of talent to lead workshops with Voxy Choir such as her long time musical collaborator, Ron Samworth.
I only met Carol Sawyer recently, but she impresses me with her diversity in artistic practice that encompasses video, photography and other fine arts as well as her imaginative performance art.
Workshop leaders outside of music have included Jay Hirabayashi, best known for his work with Kokoro Dance and a young man from the theatre, who I was introduced to as Paul. This Saturday, May 8th; the workshop was at The Western Front with NY performance artist/composer Shelley Hirsch.
Shelley Hirsch was in Vancouver to perform on the Friday evening as part of the Voice Over Mind Festival. Some members of the Voxy Choir, including me, had also participated in part of the festival at the Chan Centre on Wednesday evening under the direction of DB Boyco and Christine Duncan. Shelley will be continuing to perform locally in Seattle, WA and Victoria, BC.
The mixed choir was drawn from Voxy and DB’s students, including members of the Roundhouse Senior’s choir. We sang an adaptation of Songbird, written by Vancouver performer/composer Takeo Yamashiro for the Songbird Oratorio, a homage to the plight of birds surviving the encroachment of urban development. This composition was followed by a conducted improvisation led by both choir directors. I sang in the low section, as most of the choir could only sing in the upper range and I have worked hard to expand my range in the low part of my voice.
The evening of May 1st I experienced the Orchestrion Project, conceived and directed by Pat Metheny at The Centre for the Performing Arts in Vancouver. I obeyed the request not to take photos or make recordings, so I will offer the readily available ubiquitous You Tube examples and links to official sites where some images are available. Pat Metheny has provided some photos by Jimmy Katz on his site (left). The first part of this post is a comment on the memorable guitar collection and the second part on the automated Orchestrion. (continue reading…)
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.
UniverCity Net – digital art by Victoria Gibson
As an Integrated Media Artist, I have many project ideas that I am constantly working on. My most recent project proposals have been seeking support to develop a new instrument for me to play in performance. My current goal is to develop a performance instrument that works using gesture control and sensors to create an alternative reality environment.
Although my core training is in music, I have studied dance and motion and have spent years of my life in on-stage performance as a musician. In my recent presentations, I have played computer based instruments and I realize that a lot of the impact of musical presentation is about the gesture of producing the sound.
If I am to continue to use the computer as a performance instrument, I need to develop a controller that responds to dance-like movements. The vision of being able to focus physical energy through dance and control audio and visual elements was crystallized into my need for an Immersive Environment Instrument (IEI). (continue reading…)
I was very honoured to be asked to produce the film that was shown as the visual component of this concert in the Walter Phillips Gallery, located in the Banff Centre for the Arts.
Pauline Oliveros explained the concept and gave me freedom to develop the 20 minute film using the photos provided and my own digital artworks. Ms. Oliveros was inspired by President Obama’s speech in Cairo and the Codepink efforts to encourage peace by building three playgrounds in Gaza. I obtained permission to use photos from the Codepink Flikr stream, with attribution, from:
National Media Coordinator
CODEPINK Women for Peace
The Codepink projects are very worthy and I was proud to be able to support them and be associated with an initiative that is intended to bring people together to work for peace. In addition to the photos of children and playground construction in Gaza, we used photos of American children playing in a playground provided by Ione. She explained at the concert that she thought it was nice for them to play together. Ione was inspirational in the production of this film as she helped me to gain a more precise understanding of the concept of the musical work.
Many people complimented me on my work after the show and it will remain one of the highlights of my time in Banff. I did document the performance on video and the audio was recorded by the Banff Centre technicians, led by John DS Adams. At some point, I hope that my film, “A New Beginning: A Playground” will be shown during future concerts when Pauline and Ione perform this piece. When the audio is mixed, there are plans to produce a DVD with the soundtrack of the concert. When it is complete, it will be available from the Deep Listening Institute site.
Tech Notes: All photographs and digital artworks were prepared in open source software, The Gimp. The film was created using Final Cut Studio on a Macintosh workstation owned by the Banff Centre.