Fourth Avant Music Festival

Fourth Avant Music Festival - 2013

Six performances curated by Randy Gibson and Megan Schubert, featuring some of the most talented young interpreters in New York in works that highlight the influence of the performer on experimental music from the 20th century and today.

The fourth annual Avant Music Festival celebrates the 10th anniversary of Avant Media with an afternoon performance of John Cage's Apartment House 1776, the continuing evolution of Randy Gibson's Apparitions Of The Four Pillars and evenings of vocal works from downtown new music empresario Nick Hallett and punk-classical master Kitty Brazelton.

The Full Schedule:

Friday, February 15, 2013

Randy Gibson's Apparitions Of The Four Pillars In The Midwinter Starfield Under The Astral 789 Duet

Randy Gibson’s fully-immersive, constantly evolving work Apparitions of The Four Pillars, featuring string players Drew Blumberg and Mariel Roberts, trombonists Jen Baker and William Lang, and vocals by Gibson in a lush sine wave drone. By far Gibson’s most radical work, Apparitions… springs from the tradition pioneered by Gibson’s teacher and mentor, La Monte Young, and uses simple harmonic building blocks (four pure intervals in Just Intonation) to create an otherwordly, meditative experience that fully envelops the listener. Accompanied by video sculpture from Oscar Henriquez and lighting design by Kryssy Wright, and with performers improvising while following a set of guidelines, every performance of Apparitions is a fully-enveloping totality; a completely unique, unrepeatable experience.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

2013 Cage Day:

John Cage's Apartment House 1776

In celebration of Avant Media’s 10th year, this afternoon performance of Cage's wonderful musicircus, Apartment House 1776, features singers Imani Uzuri, Mary MacKenzie, and Matoaka Litte Eagle, with an instrumental ensemble of Avant Media alumni and friends, including: Matt Beckemeyer, Gelsey Bell, Drew Blumberg, Nicole Camacho, Randy Gibson, MIVOS Quartet, The Guidonian Hand, Mary Rowell, Eleonor Sandresky, Jessica Schmitz, Cleek Schrey, Jude Traxler, and more.

Composer Roundtable Discussion

Composers Kitty Brazelton, Randy Gibson, and Nick Hallett sat down with host Olivia Giovetti for a live-streamed discussion about the nature of contemporary music.

John Cage: Percussion, Voice, and String

The evening concert focused on Cage’s more intimate works: percussion ensemble, Mangobot, directed by MANTRA percussion’s Jude Traxler, with Joe Bergen, Al Cerulo, and Nick Woodbury, performing Third Construction, Double Music, and Three2 as well as works for voice and violin, featuring festival co-curator and vocalist Megan Schubert, violinist Mary Rowell, and vocalists Gelsey Bell and Kjersti Kveli. Included on the program were Experiences II, Eight Whiskus, Cheap Imitation, Forever and Sunsmell, and Litany for The Whale.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Kitty Brazelton's The Art of Memory

Kitty Brazelton, the genre-hopping punk-classical composer premieres a new song cycle for large ensemble that explores the “art of memory, the perception of time, and the nature and place of Myth and Faith in human life.” Using the writings of St. Augustine and plainchant (St. Ambrose’ Deus creator omnium) as organizing pillars of the work, Brazelton brings to life a work that reaches back to the fourth century while posing piquant questions on 21st-century life. Brazelton was joined on stage by vocalists Megan Schubert and Dafna Naphtali (who also designed the work’s electronic sounds); string players Megan Atchley, Nioka Workman and Lisa M Dowling; keyboardist Eleonor Sandresky; reed-player Jay Rattman and guitarist Hui Cox.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Nick Hallett's Rainbow Passage

Nick Hallett presented the world premiere of Rainbow Passage for voices and electronics. Using a diagnostic text by speech scientist Grant Fairbanks as a starting point, Rainbow Passage contains every sound of the English language. These sounds are first intoned literally by the singers (Daisy Press, Megan Schubert, and Hallett himself), and then processed through electronic means to create a musical language. A capella passages incorporate elements of Western plainchant and extended vocal technique. Like much of Hallett's work, Rainbow Passage was be presented as media ritual, in collaboration with live cinema artist Brock Monroe.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Randy Gibson's Apparitions Of The Four Pillars In The Midwinter Starfield Under The Astral 789 Duet

The closing performance of the festival features a second performance of Gibson's improvisatory Apparitions Of The Four Pillars.