Sampler Picks: September 2017

14 September 2017

This month, I’m Guest Editor of Sound and Music’s The Sampler blog. Here are my top picks for live events in September.

1. ONE

One Date: 15th September, 7:30pm
Venue: Seven Arts, Leeds

This is an intriguing series of concerts: Jacob Thompson-Bell has curated a programme that promises to somehow respond to the architecture and atmosphere of each performance location. Apparently the work can be “noisy, rough, serious, refined, gentle, playful”, so Jacob is clearly expecting a mixed crowd. A blend of improvised and prepared work, the performances use a new improvisation book by Claudia Molitor, keyboard works by Thompson-Bell himself, and musical sketches by Dan Kidane, Michael Betteridge and Ben Gaunt (who also plays piano here). Read More

2. TOM PHILLIPS Irma: an opera

IrmaDate: 16th September, 7:30pm
Venue: South London Gallery, Peckham Road, London

In 1966, Tom Philips began making art based on a forgotten Victorian novel that he bought from a second-hand bookshop. Through a process of cutting, obscuring and decorating the text, Philips created A Humument, a life-long project with many iterations. Irma is his “new” opera (it was begun in 1969), which shares source material with A Humument, and is described by its creator as “a recipe book for a stage event; with all the ingredients of traditional opera, dance episodes, drinking chorus, mad scene, erotic enactment, and the many variations on love and death”. Read More

3. It’s all True

It's all TrueDate: 21st September, 7.30pm
Venue: Cafe Oto, Ashwin St, London

For another take on collage and intertextuality (ahem…), take It’s all True performed by Object Collection: composer Travis Just and writer/director Kara Feely have created an opera based on obsessively reproducing the sonic detritus of gigs by post-hardcore band Fugazi: squealing feedback, inter-song ramblings and sporadic drum outbursts scored for four voices, four electric guitars/basses and two drummers. Read More

4. System Restart: A new generation of women composers

System Restart Date: 8th October, 7.30pm
Venue: Kings Place, London

There’s so much to love about this programme by Icebreaker – it contains so many interesting compositional voices and wonderful sounds. The programme features new music by Jobina Tinnemans, Kerry Andrew, Elizabeth Kelly, Linda Buckley and Anna Meredith, and offers an opportunity to hear Kate Moore’s excellent Mathijs Vermeulenprijs-winning The Dam, based on the “not quite polyrhythmic” sounds of a choir of cicadas, crickets, frogs, and birds at a waterhole in the bush. Read More

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