#improvaday LIVE premiere in London!
Premiering a new project is like wearing your soul on your sleeve while hoping that nothing breaks. In May, I had the pleasure/intense pressure (self inflicted) of premiering a brand new project at the i=u festival of Open Senses UK in London! I've been super jazzed about participating in the festival ever since my Eastman friend, Eugene, called about a year ago to start brainstorming!
The festival was interested in my @improvaday instagram feed. i=u is dedicated to improvisation, and as a part of a larger, multi-sensory festival, my project fit perfectly into the goals and aesthetic of the weekend. Since @improvaday lives online, I thought deeply about how to create a live version of the sometimes comical, sometimes serious, always experimental videos.
I decided to remix the videos as an accompaniment to live performance/improvisation. I enlisted the help of Abelton LIVE pro, Andrew Hlynsky, and we spent a day layering, quantizing, and chopping up my instagram videos. It was a blast! By the end of the session, I had three 10 minute pieces.
Then, I went into the studio to create structures for improvisation over the videos. I used my loop pedal, the phase rings app, and my electronic drum pad to round out the acoustic instruments: marimba, desk bells, bourbon bottles, and a woodblock :)
I packed my gear (all sans marimba - we rented that!) and headed off to London. I stayed with, and collaborated with, pianist/genius AyseDeniz Gokcin. I blew a circuit (whoops...) and then performed two concerts - one at in a club setting at Rich Mix London, and one at a awesomely crumbly church, Shoreditch Church. Both equally rad spaces! Here's a taste of the project -- "30 Maracas" at Rich Mix! (Shout out to NOT by Jenny Lai for the awesome concert attire!)
The pressure & joy of bringing something new to life was well received by the audience! They embraced the playfulness of the pieces, while asking questions about the decisions I made musically, and from the tech angle. I'll continue to workshop and build the project, planning to tour again in 2018!
Here's a few pics from the fun in London! [ft. rain, apartment rehearsals, big hair, the church cat, 11pm coffee, awesome friends & fun shoes]
Following London, I flew over to Oslo, Norway to work with Charles Martin and Christina Hopgood. Charles and I were band mates in Ensemble Evolution, and he is the creator of the phase rings app, among other awesome computer + music programs. He organized a concert at the University of Oslo featuring #improvadayLIVE and his work with apps and programming. It was great to visit Oslo again to seen how a Norwegian crowd would respond to the project (they liked it!)