The Squid's Ear Magazine

Elliott Sharp

SysOrk: Occam's Machete

Elliott Sharp: SysOrk: Occam's Machete (zOaR Records)

Assembling a world-class ensemble of 24 string players drawing from the Quartets JACK, Sirius, Flux, and Bergamot, here performing as SysOrk, Elliott Sharp's large-scale algorithmic composition provides simple instructions to the participants, creating a seething sonic tapestry of shifting, swirling tones and acoustic drones, exceptionally immersive and detailed.
 

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Personnel:



Elliott Sharp-composer

Sarah Bernstein-violin

Tom Chiu-violin

Jean Cook-violin

On Ka'a Davis-violin

Shaleah Feinstein-violin

Ledah Finck-violin

Chern Hwei Fung-violin

Joanna Mattrey-violin

Aimee Niemann-violin

Sana Nagano-violin

Sarah Thomas-violin

Judith Insell-viola

Ron Lawrence-viola

Jessica Pavone-viola

John Pickford Richards-viola

Amy Huimei Tan-viola

Irene Han-cello

Hao Jiang-cello

Chris Otto-cello

Alex Waterman-cello

Shayna Dulberger-contrabass

Kyle Motl-contrabass

Kevin Ray-contrabass

John Andrew Wilhite-contrabass


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UPC: 755491292570

Label: zOaR Records
Catalog ID: ZCD 152
Squidco Product Code: 34512

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2024
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded in concert at Main Drag Music, in Brooklyn, New York, on October 12th, 2023, by Zona Zanjeros and Elliot Sharp.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Occam's Machete is an algorithmic composition for 24 strings performing as SysOrk using simple instruction sets to yield a progression of sonic tableaux. Shifting dronalities are created by the movement of simultaneous verticalities. Microtonal intervals generate difference tone microrhythms, subliminal melodies, and "ghost instruments", a psychoacoustic phenomenon. Every performance will have a unique manfestation of internal detail while remaining identical in form. Occam's Machete was performed in one continuous movement and the recording may be heard that way or in sections.

"Occam's Machete" was performed and recorded on October 12, 2023 at Main Drag Music, Brooklyn along with "Nero Code". Main Drag's basement performance space has high ceilings with stairways and catwalks extending from top to bottom. It's a reflective room with a wonderful sound for acoustic instruments. For an immersive sonic experience, the musicians were situated throughout the space with the contrabasses on the stage flanked by the celli and violas and violins around the perimeters and up on the verticals. This piece is meant to be heard in performance in a resonant acoustic space though this recording is able to manifest one version. The ensemble included members of JACK, Sirius, Flux, and Bergamot string quartets."-zOaR


Artist Biographies

"Elliott Sharp is an American multi-instrumentalist, composer, and performer.

A central figure in the avant-garde and experimental music scene in New York City for over 30 years, Elliott Sharp has released over eighty-five recordings ranging from orchestral music to blues, jazz, noise, no wave rock, and techno music. He leads the projects Carbon and Orchestra Carbon, Tectonics, and Terraplane and has pioneered ways of applying fractal geometry, chaos theory, and genetic metaphors to musical composition and interaction.

His collaborators have included Radio-Sinfonie Frankfurt; pop singer Debbie Harry; Ensemble Modern; Qawwali singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan; Kronos String Quartet; Ensemble Resonanz; cello innovator Frances Marie Uitti; blues legends Hubert Sumlin and Pops Staples; pipa virtuoso Min-Xiao Feng; jazz greats Jack deJohnette, Oliver Lake, and Sonny Sharrock; multimedia artists Christian Marclay and Pierre Huyghe; and Bachir Attar, leader of the Master Musicians Of Jajouka.

Sharp is a 2014 Guggenheim Fellow, and a 2014 Fellow at Parson's Center for Transformative Media. He received the 2015 Berlin Prize in Musical Composition from the American Academy in Berlin. He has composed scores for feature films and documentaries; created sound-design for interstitials on The Sundance Channel, MTV and Bravo networks; and has presented numerous sound installations in art galleries and museums. He is the subject of a new documentary "Doing The Don't" by filmmaker Bert Shapiro."-Elliott Sharp

-Elliott Sharp website (http://www.elliottsharp.com/bio.html)
4/10/2024

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"Sarah Bernstein is a New York-based composer and violinist whose work incorporates vocals, electronics, improvisation and original text. She is known for her fiery multidisciplinary performances, and has garnered international acclaim for her distinctive recordings. She leads bands, performs solo, and collaborates with artists in avant-jazz, chamber music, experimental pop and noise. Nominated in the DownBeat Magazine Critics Poll for the past five years, Bernstein is a recognized innovator in forward-thinking jazz. Her approach merges post-tonal and polyrhythmic melody with sonic exploration and raw emotion. In addition to live performance, Bernstein's music is featured on radio programs, podcasts, and film scores. She is originally from San Francisco, CA."

-Sarah Bernstein Website (http://sarahbernstein.com/bio.php)
4/10/2024

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"A noted champion of new music, violinist and composer Tom Chiu has performed over 200 premieres worldwide by influential composers such as Virko Baley, Julio Estrada, Oliver Lake, Alvin Lucier, Roscoe Mitchell, Somei Satoh, and Henry Threadgill, among many others. He has also worked closely with free jazz innovator Ornette Coleman, with whom he appeared at the Walker Arts Center in 2005. His extensive discography includes recordings for the Chesky, Innova, Koch, Mode, Sombient, and Tzadik labels. In a cross-discipline context Chiu has created new mixed-media works with choreographers Pam Tanowitz and Shen Wei, audio-video artists Phill Niblock and Elise Kermani, sculptor Ernesto Neto, conceptual balloonist Judy Dunaway, and director Lee Breuer from avant theater troupe Mabou Mines. A recipient of the Chamber Music America Commissioning Grant, he has dedicated new works to Joan La Barbara, Bobby Few, Max Mandel, the Downtown Ensemble, SLAVE PIANOS, and the OpenEnded Group, and these works have been premiered at experimental venues such as Roulette, STEIM Amsterdam, Experimental Intermedia, and the Museum of the Moving Image. He has also produced or designed sonic ambiance for special events, including gala openings at Park Avenue Armory, the Noguchi Museum, and the New York Times Building (designed by Renzo Piano). His extensive film credits further showcase his creative versatility: as composer, fiddler, voice-over artist, and actor (The Man With One Red Shoe, with Tom Hanks). Chiu holds degrees in chemistry and music from Yale and Juilliard, and has presented concerts and workshops at numerous universities, including Williams, Dartmouth, Wesleyan, and William and Mary. He appears frequently as a commentator on contemporary music and culture, and has served as a consultant in a variety of artistic contexts, most recently as a panelist for the NEA."

-Flux Quartet Website (http://www.fluxquartet.com/bio.html)
4/10/2024

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"Jean Cook, violinist and Treasurer

Jean Cook has been playing violin since 1979. She is part of the 11tet, a New York based jazz composers workshop, and is a founding member of the PnR Salon in Washington, DC, which brings together post-punk rockers and classically trained musicians. In 2000, she appeared at the Kennedy Center's Hip-Hop Festival and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival with the Hip-Hop Philharmonic, a DC based live hip hop orchestra. Occasionally she plays around New York with the Dixieland group "Wriggle's Red-Hot Agate-Cracking Jassers". She currently records and performs with Beauty Pill, Gena Rowlands Band, Ida, Jenny Toomey, and Jon Langford/Ship and Pilot.

Jean produced and hosted "The Twentieth Century String Quartet" on WKCR-FM, New York from 1995-1996. She was the publicist for Washington Performing Arts Society for three years before moving to New York in 2000. Recently, she curated a western classical recital series for WPAS and produced the multimedia DIY opera, The Nitrate Hymnal. She currently works for a political group called Air Traffic Control that helps musicians to be more effective in the current election cycle."

-Antisocial Music (https://antisocialmusic.org/JeanCook.html)
4/10/2024

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On Ka'a Davis, aka John Davis, is an American jazz, reggae and avant-garde guitarist and composer.

-Discogs (https://www.discogs.com/artist/2101614-On-Kaa-Davis)
4/10/2024

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"Shaleah Feinstein, a violinist from San Francisco, is an undergraduate student at the Cleveland Institute of Music studying under world-renowned violinist, Ilya Kaler. Shaleah is the principal second violinist of the Cleveland Opera Theater and performs regularly with the Canton, Akron, Firelands, and Ashland Symphonies. Shaleah was a substitute for the New World Symphony and was a previous member of the San Francisco Youth Orchestra. She has attended festivals such as the Aspen Summer Music Festival, the Chautauqua Institute, the Festival Napa Valley Blackburn Academy, and the Montecito International Music Festival.

From a very early age, Shaleah has been passionate and heavily involved in chamber music. She has coached with members of the Juilliard, Emerson, Orpheus, Turtle Island, Del Sol, and Alexander String Quartets."

-Stars in the Classics (https://starsintheclassics.org/performers/biography-shaleah-feinstein)
4/10/2024

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"Baltimore, MD and New York City when not traveling. A passionate performer, creator, and curator of contemporary classical music, she is a co-founder of the Bergamot String Quartet and experimental duo The Witches, in addition to being a member of Atlantic Extraction (jazz quintet led by Nick Dunston) and earspace ensemble (contemporary music ensemble based in Raleigh, NC). As a composer, she has been commissioned by Imani Winds, Alarm Will Sound/Now Hear This, the Bridge Ensemble, and The Peabody Community Chorus among others. Her music embodies a desire to create and share a sound-world in which the classical tradition, the folk music with which she grew up in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and an extensive improvisatory sensibility can be in productive dialogue.

In 2019 she has been invited to perform as part of the Sitka Summer Music Festival and the Lucerne Festival Alumni tour. With the Bergamot Quartet, activities for this year include participation in the Quatuor Diotima Academy in France, the Next Festival of Emerging Artists, the Banff Centre Evolution of the String Quartet program, and the Young Artist Development Series in El Paso, TX. Ledah has also participated in Ensemble Modern's Klangspuren Academy, the Bang on a Can summer institute at MASS MoCA, Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival, the Aspen Music Festival and School, and the Yellow Barn Young Artists Program. She holds undergraduate and master's degrees in violin performance and composition from the Peabody Conservatory, where she studied with Herbert Greenberg, Oscar Bettison, and Judah Adashi, and studied at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a Kenan Scholarship, a full fellowship for musical and academic merit."

-Ledah Finck Website (https://www.ledahfinck.com/bio)
4/10/2024

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Born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Fung Chern Hwei absorbed a large amount of musical information since young in his surroundings that is filled with Chinese, Malay, South Indian, and of course, “Western” culture. After a long search for violin teacher since he was 4 years old, he finally found one when he was 8 and since then thrusted himself into the world of violin and never looked back.
Upon finishing his masters studies at the Aaron Copland School of Music in New York, Chern Hwei chose to stay back to pursue his musical career, playing different genres of music, absorbing yet even more musical languages and expressions. Styles that he plays frequently includes western classical, jazz, Middle Eastern music, tango, early music, rock, and hip hop. He recently self-released his debut album, From The Heart.
Artists that he was fortunate to work with include Uri Caine, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Stanley Clarke, Tony Bennet, Bobby McFerrin, Steve Wilson, Elliot Sharp, Billy Martin, Roberta Piket, Dave Taylor, Helen Sung, Linda Oh, Jenny Lin, Mikael Karlsson, Dana Leong, Makoto Ozone, Paquito d’Rivera, Anna Chong, among others.

Chern Hwei is currently the first violinist of Sirius Quartet, a string quartet based in New York City that performs and teach actively in the U.S, Europe and Asia. He is also a member of the Malaysian indie rock group, Platform 11, and FUGU, Malaysia-based violin-theremin experimental duo.

-Pi Recordings (https://pirecordings.com/artists/chern-hwei-fung/)
4/10/2024

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"Joanna Mattrey, violist, sound artist.

Joanna Mattrey is a violist active in both the new music and free improvisation communities who's playing often incorporates textural gestures, preparations, and electronic alterations. She is searching for moments of ceremony and ritual in a modern soundscape.

Mattrey has played with such luminaries as Marc Ribot and the Young Philadelphians, Mary Halvorson, John Zorn, Erik Friedlander, Nick Dunston and others among New York City's Downtown scene.

Her projects are incorporative of many styles which have brought her to various venues including the Whitney Museum, the Rubin Museum, MoMa's PS1, Carnegie Hall, Roulette, Boston's MFA, The Stone, Joe's Pub, LPR, and has played at SxSW, the Newport Jazz Festival, and the NYC Winter Jazz Fest.

Mattrey has commissioned solo pieces from Nick Dunston (Vijay Iyar), Weasel Walter (Lydia Lunch), Lucie Vitkova and more to bring her improvising sensibilities to the new music world."

-Joanna Mattrey Website (https://www.joannamattrey.com/)
4/10/2024

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"Aimée Niemann is a performer, improviser, and educator.

An explorer of new sounds, Aimée is the founding member of Du.0, a New York City-based violin duo that specializes in experimental contemporary and noise-based improvised music. Formed in 2015 by Aimée Niemann and Charlotte Munn-Wood, the ensemble "[shines] in moments of deep listening"(I Care If You Listen) The duo premiered two new works by composers Leah Asher and Scott Wollschleger in the winter or 2020.

Alongside Serbian violinist Marija Kovacevic, Aimée released a new four part record with BUKA spanning the seasons pre and post pandemic.

As an improviser with a background in dance, Niemann investigates sound through its direct correlation to movement. Aimée works often with dancers and in theaters and composes graphic scores that are used as structures for interdisciplinary invention and the unearthing of new sounds.

Niemann has collaborated with composers Aleksandra Vrebalov, Anthony Coleman, Alvin Lucier, Christian Wolff, Emily Praetorious, Lucia Vitkova, Jessica Pavone, and Paul Elwood. She has co-created installations with Argentinean artist Cecila Biagini and co-produced several pieces with choreographers Nadia Khayrallah, Whitney Janis and Ichi Go. She has toured internationally and performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, National Sawdust, (Le) Poisson Rouge, and Roulette Intermedium.

A passionate teaching artist, they teach violin at Third Street Music School Settlement and have a vibrant private violin studio.

Niemann received a B.M. in Violin Performance from the University of Northern Colorado and a M.M. in Violin Performance from New York University. Originally from the prairies of Colorado, they currently live in Queens, New York."

-Aimee Niemann Website (https://www.aimeeniemannviolin.com/about)
4/10/2024

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"Sana Nagano, violonist: Ever since she moved in New York City (2010), violinist and composer Sana Nagano has been performing actively in NY jazz, classical and underground music scenes. Her latest collaborations include with Karl Berger, Adam Rudolph, William Parker, Daniel Carter, the Manhattan Symphonie, Nioka Workman, John Ehlis, Federico Ughi, Harvey Valdes, Marius Duboule, Brittany Anjou, Jeffrey Shurdut and others.

Nagano holds MA degree from Aaron Copland School of Music of Queens College, BA degree from Berklee College of Music, both in jazz performance/composition major. She had studied with Joe Lovano, George Garzone, Mat Maneri, Dave Fiuczynski, Mark Feldman, Antonio Hart, Chris Howes, Hal Crook, Darren Barrett, Jeff Galindo, Rob Thomas, Matt Glaser, David Berkman and others."

-New York Jazz Workshop (https://newyorkjazzworkshop.com/faculty/sana-nagano/)
4/10/2024

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"Sarah Thomas is a classically trained, professional violinist based in the Greater Philadelphia area. She received her Bachelor of Music, summa cum laude, in violin performance from the University of Tulsa and her Master of Music in violin performance from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Born and raised in Philadelphia, PA, she began her violin studies at the age of three and a half. Despite falling asleep in lessons during the "Twinkle years," she has pursued her passion for music all of her life. Sarah is an alum of the IES Vienna Music Program, where she spent Fall 2015 studying music, performing, and attending concerts. She is also an alumna of the Bowdoin International Music Festival, the National Orchestral Institute, the Aspen Music Festival, and the Brevard Music Center. During her time at the University of Tulsa, Sarah was an active chamber musician and concertmaster of the TU Symphony. Most recently, Sarah was the principal 2nd violinist of CCM's top orchestra, Philharmonia. While at CCM, she participated in the string quartet program coached by the Ariel String Quartet and also performed in numerous student recitals and collaborations. From 2016-2017 she taught elementary school orchestra in Tulsa Public Schools and was the Beginner Strings Teacher at Sistema Tulsa. During her time in Cincinnati, Sarah cultivated a thriving studio of private students and was a faculty member of Cincinnati Strings and The Immanuel School of Music. Sarah has performed with the Signature Symphony and String Quartet and the Tulsa, Richmond, and Kentucky Symphonies. When not playing violin, Sarah enjoys gardening, cooking, running, hanging out with friends, and exploring all the fun things to do in the Philadelphia area."

-Sarah Thomas Website (https://sarahthomasviolinist.com/about/)
4/10/2024

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"Judith Insell, a New York native, has been an active member of the New York jazz, classical, and pop scene since the mid nineties. Violist can play anything!

Lee Konitz, Greg Osby, Steve Coleman, Antonio Hart, and Miguel Zenon are just a few of the many jazz greats with whom Ms. Insell has had the pleasure of performing and recording. She has performed throughout the eastern United States with the chamber jazz string group "Sojourner." As a founding member of "Sojourner," Ms. Insell has not only explored self expression through improvisation, she has also ventured into the realm of composition with the title track of the group's CD "Journey" and arranging such standards as Thelonious Monk's "I Mean You."

Her debut CD, "Dark Wood Explorations," a duo project with acclaimed jazz bassist Joe Fonda, wasreleased in September 2008. Continuing her pursuit of creativity, Ms. Insell has recently formed a collective with Virg Dzurinko (piano), Eli Asher(trumpet), & Leonid Galaganov(drums/percussion), provocatively name "Jump Off This Bridge" and she previously collaborated with Reut Regev(trombone) & Tomas Ulrich(cello) in the "Twisted Standard Trio."

Ms. Insell has also had an active career on the "pop" music scene performing and recording with artists Beyonce Knowles, India.Arie, Jessica Simpson, and "Joe." As a member of the "Soldier String Quartet," she was on an extensive world tour with rock legend John Cale throughout the nineties.

She has performed with the New Jersey Symphony, the National Chorale Orchestra and is currently a member of the Greenwich Symphony. She has performed in the Broadway Orchestras for Les Miserables (25th Anniversary Edition), A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, Gypsy, Ms. Saigon, Tommy, Carousel, and Kiss of the Spider Woman.

As an educator and administrator, Ms. Insell is currently the Director of Curriculum and Artist Development for the Bronx Arts Ensemble and was formerly a member of the Juilliard School's "Educational Outreach Team," serving as a mentor and consultant to the Morse Teaching Fellows. She previously held the position of Director of the School for Performing Arts at Bronx House, Director of Music at The Harlem School of the Arts, Assistant Director of Instrumental Studies at Mannes College The New School for Music, Director of the String Program at The Collegiate School, Director of the String Program at The Juilliard School- MAP Program and Director of the String Program at The Bloomingdale School of Music. She also completed 1-year association with "Education Through Music," as a Teaching Artist.

Ms. Insell has also been a contributing writer for All About Jazz - NY since January 2006.

Judith attended the Manhattan School of Music where she was classically trained: receiving both her Undergraduate and Masters degrees."

-Judith Insell Website (http://www.judithinsell.com/tour)
4/10/2024

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"Ron Lawrence: viola

From John Adams to John Zorn, violist Ron Lawrence has performed and recorded with many of new music's most exciting personalities. Besides being a founding member of the Sirius Quartet, he has performed extensively with Cuartetango, Quartet Indigo, the Soldier String Quartet and the Orchestra of St. Luke's. Other collaborators include Anthony Braxton, John Blake, Bob Beldon, Anthony Davis, Regina Carter, Elliott Sharp, James Blood Ulmer, Cassandra Wilson, John Cale, and Eumir Deodato. Further uptown, he has recorded with Kathleen Battle, Robert Craft, John Cage, and Andre Previn.

One of Ron's most exciting projects was a journey to Alaska to record John Luther Adams' multi-media spectacular, Earth and the Great Weather -A Sonic Geography of the Arctic. Despite a rigorous performance schedule, he was able to break away each evening to cross-country ski under the Northern Lights."

-Sirius Quartet (https://www.siriusquartet.com/ron-lawrence)
4/10/2024

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"Jessica Pavone (composer, viola, violin, el.bass) has performed in countless improvisation, avant jazz, experimental, folk, soul, and chamber ensembles since moving to NYC in 2000. She currently plays with Normal Love, in a duo with guitarist Mary Halvorson, with Anthony Braxton's ensembles and as a solo violist. As a composer, The Wire magazine praised her "ability to transform a naked tonal gesture into something special," and The New York Times described her music as "distinct and beguiling...its core is steely, and its execution clear."

Pavone's recent works for solo viola and voice stem from years of concentrated long tone practice and an interest in repetition, song form, and sympathetic vibration. She combines her long tone rituals with delay, understated melodies and sparse lyrical content while continuously experimenting with new forms. She is interested in the physicality of performing her somewhat larger-than-comfortable instrument and believes that cultivating physical bodies as a strong container for her thoughts is part of the creative process.

As an instrumentalist, she has personally worked with and interpreted new music by; Aaron Seigel, Andrew Raffo Dewar, Elliott Sharp, Glenn Branca, Henry Threadgill, Leo Smith, Jason Ajemian, Jason Cady, Jeremiah Cymerman, John King, Matana Roberts, Matthew Welch, Tristan Perich, Tyondai Braxton and William Parker; and, has played strings in bands such as Christy and Emily, Pure Horsehair, White Blue Yellow and Clouds, Joy Mega, and The Artificials.

Pavone has toured extensively throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe, performing in venues ranging from international music festivals, universities, and art galleries, to community centers and basements. Her music has premiered in venues in New York City such as, Roulette, Issue Project Room, and The Kitchen, and at the Klangbad Festival in Sheer, Germany. In 2011 she was featured in NPR's "The Mix: 100 Composers Under 40." She has received grants and commissions from the Aaron Copland Recording Fund, the American Music Center, New Music USA for her collaboration with choreographer, Anna Sperber, The Kitchen, MATA, The Jerome Foundation, The Tri-Centric Foundation, Experiments in Opera, and the chamber music collective, Till By Turning."

-Jessica Pavone Website (http://www.jessicapavone.com/bio.htm)
4/10/2024

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"Called "wholesome-looking" by the New York Times, violist John Pickford Richards has gained a reputation for performing new and unusual music. Before playing in JACK, he was a founding member of the ensemble Alarm Will Sound, allowing him to work closely with composers such as John Adams, Meredith Monk, and Steve Reich at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the Holland Festival. John has appeared with bands such as the All-American Rejects, Silversun Pickups, and Grizzly Bear and has performed as soloist with the Pasadena Symphony, Armenian Philharmonic, Wordless Music Orchestra, Ossia New Music, and with the Lucerne Festival Academy Orchestra playing the solo part to Luciano Berio's Chemins II under the direction of Pierre Boulez. He holds degrees from the Interlochen Arts Academy and Eastman School of Music where his primary teachers were David Holland and John Graham."

-Miller Theatre Website (http://www.millertheatre.com/explore/bios/john-pickford-richards)
4/10/2024

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"Violist Amy Huimei Tan is dedicated to exploring the boundaries of artistic experiences through performing and collaborating across a wide range of musical styles and artistic disciplines.

An avid chamber musician based in NYC, Amy is a member of the Bergamot Quartet with whom she has performed at venues including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Kennedy Center, and New York City Center. Amy has also brought new works to life through collaborative performances and recordings with Sō Percussion, Alarm Will Sound, Bang on a Can, arx duo, Claire Chase, Dan Trueman, Terry Sweeney, and members of the International Contemporary Ensemble for the Kaufman Center's Luna Composition Lab. This season's engagements includes being a featured artist with the Louis Moreau Institute in New Orleans, Louisiana, and upcoming appearances with Bergamot Quartet at Roulette Intermedium, and on Kaufman Center's Ecstatic Music series.

Amy has completed programs including the Aspen Music Festival and School, Chautauqua Institution Music Festival, National Orchestral Institute, International Music Festival of the Adriatic, the Banff Centre, the Next Festival of Emerging Artists, Aigues-Vives en Musique Festival, New Music on the Point, and the Bang on a Can Summer Institute. Born and raised in Singapore, Amy received her bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan studying viola with Yizhak Schotten and composition with Paul Schoenfeld, Evan Chambers and Bright Sheng, and her master's and performance diploma degrees from the Peabody Conservatory where she studied viola with Victoria Chiang and received the Israel Dorman Memorial Award for strings. Amy recently completed her residence at the Mannes School of Music as the Cuker and Stern Graduate String Quartet with the Bergamot Quartet, studying with members of the JACK Quartet."

-Bergamot Quarrtet (https://www.bergamotquartet.com/members)
4/10/2024

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"Cellist Irene Han is a dedicated chamber musician, passionate about performing a wide array of styles. As a soloist and a chamber musician she has performed at Musique en Graves, Musique à Hourtin, Festival de Musique a Flaine, Sowebo Arts and Music Festival, Festival ils Prennent la Place, Evolution Contemporary Music series and the Banff Festival. Irene was an associate member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago for the 2018-2019 season.

She is a member of Ensemble Nova, an ensemble focused on creating new performance concepts in music including non standard repertoire and styles based in Lyon, France, and the Bergamot Quartet currently based in Baltimore. Her passion projects include working with movement and free improvisation.

Raised in Paris, France, she holds prizes from the Bellan Competition, the Fontainebleau Competition, as well as a unanimous first prize from the CRR of Paris, a Degré de Perfectionnement from the CRR of Lyon, a Bachelor of Music from the Manhattan."

-Groupmuse (https://www.groupmuse.com/musicians/6864-irene-han)
4/10/2024

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"Yun Hao Jiang, born in Shanghai, China, began his cello studies at the Shanghai Conservatory and continued his studies at the Municipal School of Music in Montevideo, Uruguay, the College of Chalerston, USA, and most recently, Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University. Among his teachers and coaches were Pedro Laniella, William Molinas, Claudio Baraviera, Owen Carmen, Steven Doane, Hans Jensen, Damian Kremer, Suren Bagratuni, and Natalia Khoma."

-Charleston Academy of Music (https://www.charlestonacademyofmusic.com/staff)
4/10/2024

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"Christopher Otto studied composition at the Eastman School of Music with Martin Bresnick, David Liptak, and Robert Morris. As a violinist, Christopher has premiered many compositions and worked with such composers as Harrison Birtwistle, Pierre Boulez, Helmut Lachenmann, and Steve Reich.

Christopher has participated as composer and performer in such contemporary music festivals as the Lucerne Festival Academy, Internationale Musikinstitut Darmstadt, Karlheinz Stockhausen Courses, Institute and Festival for Contemporary Performance at the Mannes College of Music, June in Buffalo, and Festival Internacional de Msica Contempornea de Michoacn."

-Pi Recording (https://pirecordings.com/artists/chris-otto/)
4/10/2024

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"Alex Waterman is a composer, performer, producer, and scholar, exploring how social bodies can live and interact with one another in more musical ways. He has created a diverse body of works including sound installations, television operas, film and video works, exhibitions, amateur choral works, radio and film scores, and solo performances as a cellist, electronic musician and storyteller.

His installation works, films and music productions have been exhibited at the ICA London, Stonescape, Vilma Gold, The Kitchen, Miguel Abreu Gallery,Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, the Serpentine London, White Columns, the Swiss Institute, Kunstverein Amsterdam, The Rotterdam Film Festival, The Toronto Film Festival, CAC Bretigny, the Bonnefantenmuseum, the St. Louis Museum, and the Whitney Museum.

Alex Waterman and Robert Ashley were artists in the 2014 Whitney Biennial. He built a television studio and installation space inside the Whitney Museum and produced three operas by Ashley. In November 2017 he presented his first solo opera at the Donaueschingen Musiktage in Germany.

Waterman has taught at Bard College (MFA program), NYU, Bloomfield College, and the Banff Centre for the Arts. He was a Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at Wesleyan University from 2015-18 and currently teaches at Ramapo College of New Jersey."

-Alex Waterman Website (https://www.alexwaterman.com/info)
4/10/2024

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"Shayna Dulberger is a bassist currently living and working in New York City. Her work is mostly known in the creative and experimental jazz genre. Since 2007 she has regularly worked with Bill Cole performing in New York City and at Syracuse University. She has recorded and performed with artists such as: Ras Moshe, William Parker, Chris Welcome, Daniel Carter, Stars Like Fleas, Walter Wright, and many others. She has performed in many festivals and series such as XFest (Lowell, MA), Rhythm in the Kitchen, KMB Jazz Festival, CMJ, "Brooklyn Next" BAM Festival, the Vision Festival, ABC No Rio's C.O.M.A., and Neues Kabarett's events at the Brecht Forum.

Dulberger's first album as a band leader, composer and producer is named "TheKillMeTrio" and was described "...as one of the stronger avant-jazz groups we've heard in some time." (Time Out New York) In 2007, in a review of TheKillMeTrio album "Jazz and Tzaz" wrote "The 23 year old New Yorker does not comply with the trendy model of women in Jazz". Bruce Lee Gallanter (DMG) wrote in a review for Ras Moshe's album Transcendence, "Acoustic bassist, Shayna Dulberger, is another important new musician to watch, she takes a number amazing solos on this disc that show her to be a new force to be reckoned with." Shayna has been interviewed on Taran's Free Jazz Hour (Angers, France) and was invited by All About Jazz to participate in their "Listen Up!" Section.

Dulberger's most recent album, The Basement Recordings is a solo recording consisting of loops that are rhythmically cryptic. This album is a break from the style she is most well known for. It is repetitious and mellow, not aggressive and chaotic like her work with the downtown NYC free jazz scene. It is a nontraditional solo upright bass recording. Although her main influences are Peter Kowald, William Parker, Kent Kessler, Joelle Leandre and other well known bassists, there is barely a hint of it here. Instead, she is influenced by the rhythmic elasticity and percussion of Southeast Asia, The Thai Elephant Orchestra for their sense of space and rhythm, and Throbbing Gristle for their experimentation with reverb and delay.

On this album, Dulberger's upright bass evokes the sound of other string and percussion instruments."The Garden" sounds like a harp. "Yuko" (dedicated to poet Yuko Otomo) is reminiscent of the Japanese shamisen. You can hear wind float through glass vases on "The Swings". The Basement Recordings contain no jazzy bass solos, no experimenting with licks and virtuosity. The focus is on space and meditation. For the New York City Jazz Record, Gordon Marshall wrote "No more than a patch of wilderness is The Basement Recordings uniformly beautiful and vibrant".

Dulberger was born in 1983 and raised in Mahopac, NY. She attended Manhattan School of Music's preparatory division during high school and graduated with a BM in Jazz at the Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University."

-Shayna Dulberger Website (http://www.shaynadulberger.com/Bio.html)
4/10/2024

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"Kyle Motl is a bassist, composer, and improviser. Active in a variety of ensembles and settings, Kyle's work crosses the boundaries between idioms as wide as free jazz, contemporary concert music, and extreme metal. Current interests include extended harmonic techniques for solo bass improvisation, electroacoustic performance with live electronics and improvising software, modular compositional schemes, recursive and generative structuring, and exploration of complex sonic spectra.

Kyle is a member of the Peter Kuhn Trio, and has been performing in quartet and trio with Abbey Rader since 2011. He maintains regular duo projects with T.J. Borden, Adam Tinkle, and Drew Ceccato. The Kyle Motl Trio, featuring Kjell Nordeson and Tobin Chodos is a collaborative platform for new compositions weaving complex structures together with free improvisation. Kyle has performed alongside artists including Anthony Davis, Kidd Jordan, Mary Halvorson, Roscoe Mitchell, Mark Dresser, and Wadada Leo Smith, among others.

Kyle holds a BM from Florida Atlantic University and an MM from Florida International University. He is a DMA candidate at UC San Diego, where he studies bass with Mark Dresser."

-Kyle Motl Website (http://www.kylemotl.com/about/biography/)
4/10/2024

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"Kevin Ray came to music relatively late in life, entering The New School at 25, where he came under the wing of Reggie Workman, a relationship that continues to this day. Under Reggie's tutelage, he developed an appreciation for the entire spectrum of what is called jazz, as well as an affinity for adventurous artists such as The Art Ensemble of Chicago, Henry Threadgill, The World Saxophone Quartet, Andrew Cyrille, and others. Unsure of himself after college, he managed a department at Forbes Publishing, and worked as a consultant at JPMorgan Chase. At the same time, he came into contact with one of his spiritual mentors, Andrew Hill. "Andrew gave me the confidence to be truly serious about becoming a musician," Ray explains.

For ten years he played regularly with Hill and continued to expand his horizons by performing and recording with other outstanding artists such as John Hicks, Oliver Lake, Greg Osby, John Stubblefield, Ray Anderson, Elliott Sharp, Hamiet Bluiett, Nels Cline, Ursula Oppens, Ken Peplowski, J.D. Allen, and Kalaparusha Maurice McIntyre. At the present time, he is a member of several cooperative ensembles, such as 10³²K, with Frank Lacy and Andrew Drury; BLRZ, with Bobby Zankel, Kelvyn Bell and Tony Lewis; and Shipp/Lowe/Cleaver/Ray with Matthew Shipp, Allen Lowe and Gerald Cleaver."

-Kevin Ray Website (https://www.kevinraybass.com/bio)
4/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"John Andrew Wilhite-Hannisdal is an Oslo-based composer, musician, and sound artist whose work blurs lines between genres and disciplines.

John Andrew's projects engage with a wide range of found sounds, archival, and field recordings. What unites a diverse body of work, is not a desire to use music to reflect upon the world, but a desire to directly engage with the world through music. John Andrew's works invite performers to listen to and interact with the extra-musical, which could mean the non-living, the non-human, the more-than-human, or cultural and historical phenomena, as we search together for the limits of communication and the social. John Andrew leads the project Torsketromming with scientist Rebekah Oomen. Their work recording, studying, and making music together with cod fish is changing how we view the sociality of fish, and how we can help rekindle dwindling cod populations. Read an in depth article here.

His compositions and arrangements have been performed at series and festivals such as Barents Spektakel, Sacred Realism, METEOR, and the Ultima Festival. He is a recipient of a comission from the VOeX program at The Norwegian National Opera, and was a featured artist at Nordic Arts Lab. Recent premiers include the floating performance-installation "Cod Connection" at Only Connect 2022 at the Munch Museum, and Kunngjøringer fra pariserkommunen at the Norwegian National Opera. His most recent work, Bristol Silence, recieved national media attention for its exploration of themes surrounding musicians' political responsibility, specifically illuminating the complex, yet potentially problematic history of the Norwegian Radio Orchestra. Read an in depth interview with John Andrew here.

As a performer, John Andrew works regularly with artists such as Elliott Sharp, and the Andreas Røysum Ensemble. A regular guest at festivals for both jazz and contemporary music, this years engagments include ArteActs (AU), Moers Festival (DE), Oslo Jazz Festival (NO), and Östersjöfestivalen (SE).

John Andrew is holds Masters degrees in both double bass performance and composition from the Norwegian Academy of Music, where he studied with Håkon Thelin (bass), and Trond Reinholdtsen (composition). His projects focused on the music of Stefano Scodanibbio and Håkon Thelin, and on linguistic reconciliation with loss through music.

John Andrew also has a degree in Music Composition from Reed College (Portland, Oregon), where he studied with David Schiff.

He studied at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music (New York) as a pupil of Reggie Workman. .

John Andrew studied Slavic art and philosophy. He worked for philosopher Boris Groys at NYU and was research assistant to Evgenii Berstein at Reed College."

-John Andrew Wilhite Website (https://johnandrew.no/about.html)
4/10/2024

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Track Listing:



1. Occam's Machete Part 1 8:39

2. Occam's Machete Part 2 8:56

3. Occam's Machete Part 3 10:13

4. Occam's Machete Part 4 7:42

5. Occam's Machete Part 5 7:20

Related Categories of Interest:


Compositional Forms
Large Ensembles
Stringed Instruments
Recordings Utilizing the Natural Resonance of a Space
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
New in Compositional Music
Recent Releases and Best Sellers

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