Alexander Hunter – viola de gambe – Canberra
Dr Alexander Hunter studied composition, double bass, viola da gamba and ethnomusicology at Northern Illinois University, and received a PhD in composition from Edinburgh Napier University. Currently lecturing at the Australian National University, Hunter teaches composition and theory, and directs the ANU Experimental Music Studio. His work as a composer is based on open works, which encourage a fluid relationship between composer, score and performer. Hunter’s current performance-led research is based on his participation in a trio of improvisers utilising the combination of open works, early instruments, and electroacoustic techniques and spatialisation. As a composer Hunter has worked with the following performers/ensembles: Mabel Kwan (Chicago), the Quiet Music Ensemble (Cork), Pesedjet (members of Chicago-based Ensemble Dal Niente), the Chimera Ensemble (York), the Edinburgh Quartet (Edinburgh), Scottish Voices (Glasgow), ensemble a.pe.ri.od.ic (Chicago) and others. As a researcher his work has been focused on the music of the New York School; reductionist improvisers and other improvisers and improvisation ensembles; the writings of Rob Haskins and Jonathan D. Kramer; feminism, anarchism and leftist politics in composition and performance; and open musical forms and notation. https://alexanderhunter.co.uk/
Bonnie Stewart – Drummer – Sydney
Bonnie Stewart is a musician, improvisor and composer. She was drawn to Australia’s definitive sound in the creative jazz scene, and moved from Dublin to Sydney in 2012. Bonnie completed an Honours BA in jazz performance on the drums at Newpark Music Centre, Dublin in 2010. She furthered her studies at the School of Improvised Music New York, with jazz innovators such as Tom Rainey, Ralph Alessi and Drew Gress. She was also awarded a full scholarship in 2008 to attend a summer intensive workshop at Berkelee School of Music in Boston, as well as participating in an improvised music workshop in Salzburg, Austria with the influential drummer Jim Black as her mentor. Bonnie is regularly collaborating in the experimental improv scene in Sydney and has performed alongside artists such as Jim Denley, Clayton Thomas, Cor Fuhler, Dale Gorfinkel, Laura Altman, and Burchard Beins (Germany). She also plays in The Splinter Orchestra: a large-scale ensemble made up of improvisors and sound artists, and has been performing with Splinter at the Nownow festival in Sydney since 2011. The Jazzgroove Association selected Bonnie, as a featured artist in 2014 with her quintet “Criss Cross”. Bonnie is also up-and-coming in the folk song writer scene with her self led project “Bonniesongs”, where she performs solo combining voice, mandolin, loops, bass drum and tambourine. Bonnie’s playing combines textural soundscapes, dynamic range and momentum. Her aesthetic includes indian rhythmic concepts creative jazz and improvisation.
Chloe Hobbs – prepared piano/toys – Canberra
Chloë is an experimental composer and free-improviser based in Canberra. Her works aim to challenge traditional concepts of musical hierarchies through the use of open forms; improvisation; unconventional instruments, including the use of electronic media, found objects, and toys; and the rejection of traditional constructs of pitch, rhythm, and texture. She is interested in the sonic and structural possibilities created by the individual sound itself: the ‘sound of sounds’. Chloë is also a member of the award-winning Experimental Music Studio (which includes subsets such as the Improvisation Ensemble, the Toy Ensemble, and the Prepared Piano Ensemble). As a group, they have performed at various venues and festivals in the region.
Christian Meaas Svendsen - double bassist - Norway
Christian Meaas Svendsen was born and raised in Kongsberg, Norway. He studied jazz/improvisation for 4 years together with Bjørn Kjellemyr at The Norwegian Academy of Music, and another 2 years of classical training together with Dan Styffe at the same institution. He also did one exchange year to Cologne, and studied under Dieter Manderscheid, Sebastian Gramss and Dietmar Fuhr. Among his main projects we find his very own Nakama, the duo Duplex together with Harald Lassen on saxophone, and the jazz quintet Mopti. The latter one won the Norwegian jazz competition JazzIntro in 2012. As a sideman he is active in a wide variety of bands and genres such as the 11-piece monster band Paal Nilssen-Love Large Unit, together with drummer Per Oddvar Johansen and Japanese piano player Ayumi Tanaka in Ayumi Tanaka Trio, in the power trio Momentum together with saxophone player Jørgen Mathisen and drummer Andreas Wildhagen or as member of the contemporary music ensemble Aksiom. He is also exploring the solo format, and the bass, bow(s) and body is the basis for his work, as he tries to further develop traditional and some extended techniques on his instrument. Christian also runs his own record label «Nakama records» established in 2015. He writes and arranges music for most of his groups. As a bass player he is always on the search, challenging, innovative, and is aiming towards becoming distinctive musician, and connect the classical, contemporary and the free, rhythmic music tradition.
Fredric Blondy: piano – Trio RHRR - France
Frédéric Blondy has performed in many festivals and venues in Europe, North America, Middle East and Asia, working with, amongst others Paul Lovens, Rhodri Davies, Lê Quan Ninh, Michel Doneda, Joëlle Léandre, Urs Leimgruber, Thomas Lehn, Daunik Lazro, Radu Malfatti, John Tilbury, Otomo Yoshihide, Mats Gustafsson,.... and developed a thorough work with ensembles like Hubbub, Ethos. As composer, he wrote music for films, videos, and danse and works with several ensembles. In 2011 he created (artistic director/composer) the Orchestre de Nouvelles Créations, Expérimentations et Improvisations Musicales (ONCEIM - ensemble of 30 musicians) to develop links between improvisers skills and written music. He has run for several years, a regular workshop on improvisation and contemporary sound practices, first at the then as part of the Rendez-Vous Contemporains of Saint Merry. He is a regular speaker at the Cité de la Musique in Paris for workshops on contemporary sound practices and new creation tools. More occasionally he is requested in many festivals in Europe, North America and Japan to lead courses and presenting lectures about improvisation and contemporary sound practices. He has made almost 20 recordings published on different European labels. He is a regular guest on national radio for concerts or to participate in broadcasts. His concerts are regularly recorded and broadcast by national radios: France Musique, SWR, BBC...He is also involved in the promotion of improvised and contemporary music as well as visual arts through and the festival Crak in Paris inviting international artists for concerts, performances, screenings, meetings.. http://www.fredericblondy.net/
Freya Schack-Arnott – Cello – Sydney/Denmark
Born in Melbourne, Freya undertook her Bachelor of Music Performance with Honours at the Victorian College of the Arts (Melbourne University), under the tutelage of Howard Penny, Nicholas Bochner and Josephine Vains. Following her studies, Freya moved to Copenhagen, Denmark, to be mentored by internationally renowned Danish cellist Jakob Kullberg. In 2015, Freya became the first improvising cellist to be awarded a place at the Rhythmic Music Conservatorium in Copenhagen. June 2016 will see the development of the "The Silk Road Project" in Lanzhou, China, together with Australian singer Sophia Brous and Australian/Chinese Guzheng player, Mindy Wong, and otherwise Freya currently divides her time between projects in Sydney, Melbourne and Copenhagen. Ensembles Freya has performed with include: Bang on a Can (USA), Quiver New Music ensemble (AUS), Michael Bublé (CA), Peerish (DK), Indianerne feat. Eugene Chadbourne (DK) and Ensemble Midtvest (DK). Freya has also appeared in the Now Now festival (Sydney), Melbourne Fringe Jazz festival and Copenhagen Jazz Festival (DK). Since 2015 Freya has been a casual member of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra. 2016/17 will see the release of debut album with Danish trio Skaft, Økse og Sav, consisting of a unique language of electronically manipulated cello, bandoneon and electric guitar improvisations, as well as an album with Italian bassist Roberto Bordiga and his band. Other projects Freya are currently involved in include: GRAM, a classical/world music ensemble led by danish guitarist Emil Palme, Wood Organisation, led by Polish drummer Szymon Pimpon, duo with Swedish singer Lo Ersare and projects with danish singer and author Per Bloch. Freya is also currently developing her solo project exploring contemporary classical compositions within improvised music frameworks. Alongside tertiary studies, Freya has received lessons and masterclasses from Gary Hoffman, Jon Rose, Erkki Veltheim, Morten Zeuthen, Tilmann Wick, Dmitri Ferschtmann, Bjorn Bantock, Peter Rejto and Maria Kliegel. https://youtu.be/94lVws-8yiE
Gail Priest: electronics - Sydney
Gail is a sound artist from Sydney, Australia making experimental sound and electronic music that explores the interaction of the figurative and the abstract, the machinic and the organic, the sensual and the brutal. Her practice encompasses performance, recording, sound design for dance and theatre, installation, curation and writing. She has performed and exhibited nationally and internationally and has several CD releases on her own label, Metal Bitch, as well as other labels including Flaming Pines. She is also a curator of concerts and exhibitions and writes factually and fictively about sound and media arts. www.gailpriest.net
Guylaine Cosseron: vocalist – Trio RHRR - France
She received Gold Medal at the jazz conservatory in Normandy, and started a jazz and Arabic music course with the quartet "The black slippers" and also started the vocal sextet “The big mouths” in Montpellier (cd sony) and then with the contemorary jazz quartet "The Bohemian waxwing, in 2000. She also sings in the jazz group of Balkan music "Bohemia Express" and with percussionist Emmanuel Ricard and in the public young duo "Before the words" (prehistoric music for young shoots). Her virtuosic vocal technique allows her to explore a wide range of vocal registers very original and well mastered, including various sound materials close musical instruments and the sounds or ethnic diponiques triphonic. Since 2005 she is engaged primarily in the improvised contemporary music, working with musicians including: Joelle Leandre, Phil Minton, Charles Xavier, Frederic Blondy, Camel Zekri, John Russell, Regis Huby, Michel Doneda, Simon Fell, Lee Quan Nihn, Fabrice Charles Toma Gouband, Sophie Agnel, Soizic Lebrat. Since 2012 she plays in the experimental band the OMEDOC in Normandy. She is also a vocalist in the draft sound poetry: "Events and Exorcism" with the comedian Denis washing and guitarist Jean-François Pauvros around texts by Henri Michaux.
Irene Kepl: violin – Austria
Violinist and composer Irene Kepl studied classical violin and jazz in Linz and she now lives in Vienna. Her work focuses primarily on contemporary classical music, free improvisation, composition, Jazz and groove based musics. She has performed at many prestigous venues and festivals including: Klangspuren Schwaz, Festival 4020, Festival Unlimited, 12 points Festival/SE, Donau Festival Ulm, DanceKiosk Hamburg/GER, Java Jazz Festival, Jazzfest Vienna, Jazz Festival Petrovac/ME. Her music has been broadcast on various radio stations in Austria and abroad. She has received the fellowship „music OMI“ New York, Gustav Mahler Composition Prize, the national scholarship for young musicians, the talent development award for composition from Upper Austria and the Theodor Körner Prize for composition. Commissioned works for Brucknerfest Linz, ORF Musikprotokoll and Wiener Festwochen. She has worked with Joëlle Leàndre/FR, Malcolm Goldstein and George Cremaschi/USA, Korhan Ehel/TR, Petr Vrba/CZ and Moe Staiano/USA amongst others. She is also the founder of the monthly held concert series "Musik in Raum" in Upper Austria, which will feature many different projects. Further work includes commissions for theater, film and sound installations. http://www.irenekepl.at/Irene_Kepl/next.html
John Porter: alto/tenor saxophone – Sydney
Born in Toowoomba in 1985, John is a formidable young saxophonist with a deep interest in free improvisation. After starting on the clarinet at an earlier age he switched to the tenor saxophone and never looked back. In 2003 John moved to Brisbane to study music full-time, completing a Bachelor of Music in 2005 and a Master of Music in 2008 where his thesis was on the avant garde composer Cornelius Cardew. It was during this time that John received his first exposure to improvised music, participating in a number of groups in and around Brisbane. He has since played with a number of artists including Shoji Hano, Jeff Henderson, Kris Wanders, Madoka Kouno, Elliott Dalgleish, and the Stasis Duo, and appears on recordings released by the [Array] and Homophoni labels. John is currently in a saxophone trio with Richard Johnson and Rhys Porter called Psithurism Trio. He loves playing music to birds and animals in a dialogue with the sound-scapes around him, as it were. http://www.francoishoule.ca/franois-houle-psithurism-trio/
Luiz Gubeissi – double bass –Brazil/Australia
Born in Brazil, the bassist Luiz Gubeissi has participated in groups of several musical strands, including jazz, bossa nova, folk and traditional music, rock among others but currently he is practically only dedicated to the improvisation. In the free improvisation context, he has been a member of the musical group Abaetetuba Collective since 2004 together with the musicians Antonio Panda Gianfratti, Rodrigo Montoya, Thomaz Rohrer and Marcio Mattos. Joining the group, Luiz has performed in relevant cultural centers in Brazil, played in the Australian ground for the first time in 2013 at the SoundOUT festival. Luiz has also played live within many other improvisers such as Urs Leimgruber, Sabu Toyozumi, Roger Turner, Yedo Gibson, Phil Minton, Terry Day, John Rose, Barcorde Quartet. Living in Australia since 2014, Gubeissi has joined the Splinter Orchestra since as well as other musical formations in the currently Australian impro scene. Summarizing his work as an improviser, Luiz uses the extended techniques of the instrument as a premise to expose his musical ideas, having the Nature as his main influence. Discography: Abaetetuba V. 1 (Collective Abaetetuba), Abaetetuba & Márcio Mattos (Abaetetuba Collective), Curió (Collective Abaetetuba), Peabiru (Collective Abaetetuba). Special participation in the album Liberdade (duo Yedo Gibson and Antonio Panda Gianfratti)
Mia Zabelka – violin – Austria
The story behind MIA ZABELKA – a violinist and vocalist from Vienna, with Czech and French roots, who is regarded as one of the leading 21st century proponents of what is known as experimental violin music is not necessarily what might be expected. She has now developed a unique language based on the de- and reconstruction of the violin’s sonic possibilities for over 20 years, expanding the range of the instrument using live electronic devices, preparing it through the insertion of alien objects between or on the strings and innovative performance techniques. She has collaborated with numerous prominent international artists including John Zorn, David Moss, Pauline Oliveros, Eliot Sharp, Dälek, Audrey Chen, and Maria Chavez, Robin Rimbaud aka Scanner, Lydia Lunch and Electric Indigo among many others. .
Since 2015 Mia Zabelka is the president of the Society for Free Improvisation and Experimental Music Austria (SFIEMA). Recent concerts and performances at many international festivals and venues, such as VNM Festival/Graz, Mopomoso/London, Sonic Circuits Festival/Washington DC, Issue Project Room/New York, Cafe Oto/London, Nuit d'Hiver Festival/Marseille, strefa monotype/Warsaw, AAVE Festival/Helsinki, Avant-garde Festival/Schiphorst, Henie Onstad Museum/Oslo, Oorsprong Curator Series/Amsterdam, Festival Musique Actuelle/Victoriaville, Audiovisiva Festival/Milano, among others. MIA currently plays solo and collaborates in duos with Audrey Lauro, Gino Robair, Philippe Petit and SONOS2 /Svetlana Maras, with video artist Mia Makela, in trios with Medusa’s Bed feat. Lydia Lunch/Zahra Mani, Astma feat. Olga Kosova/Alexei Borisov, TRIO Mia Zabelka/ Nikola Hein/ Sebastian Gramms, TRIO BLURB feat. John Russell/Maggie Nicols/Mia Zabelka and in quartets with PHON feat. Meinrad Kneer/Elliott Sharp/ Andreas Willers/ Mia Zabelka and 4-tet George Hadow/ Albert van Veenendaal/ Raoul van der Weide/ Mia Zabelka.
Rhys Butler: alto sax – Canberra
Rhys has come to know the cities he has lived in through improvised and noise music. The trio Dinner Sock (Stephen Roach (drums), David Keyton (feedback), and Rhys Butler (saxophones)) formed from the weekly Fugue State Sessions in Guanzhou. The group performed with local experimenters such as Yan Jun, Feng Hao and Li Zenghui and collaborated with musicians transiting China such as Uwe Bastiansen (Faust) and Lucas Abela. Despite living in different corners of the world, Dinner Sock has continued to participate in China's experimental music scene and played Beijing's Sally Can't Dance festival and NOIShanghai in 2012. In Santiago, Chile, Rhys participated in events run by Productura Mutante and played in the free-for-all Collective Improvisation NO. Now residing in Canberra, Rhys has been working in a duo with Reuben Ingall (live processing) and more recently in a reeds trio Psithurism with John Porter and Richard Johnson. http://www.francoishoule.ca/franois-houle-psithurism-trio/
Rhys Mottley: guitar - Sydney
Rhys Mottley is a guitarist and improviser. He graduated from the ANU School of Music in 2012 majoring in Jazz guitar. Once completing his degree, he relocated to Sydney where he now regularly performs with The Splinter Orchestra and Rebel Scum. Rhys is forever searching for new sounds while improvising - be it on the guitar with preparations, alternate tunings and effects, or through percussive objects or the bass clarinet.
Richard Johnson: wind instruments – Canberra
Richard performs with the texture of sound on soprano/baritone saxophone and bass clarinet and is experimenting with use of a bass drum with soprano saxophone to create a language of microtonal textural resonance. Also he has been making instruments from conical gourds from PNG, which allow the stripping back of the wind instruments to their most visceral and most sensuous form and allow for the exploration of extended techniques. He has performed at the SoundOut 2010 – 2016 festivals; What is Music Festival, Nownow Festival; the Make it Now performances; also performances with the Brice Glace Ensemble and the 102 Club Orkestra in Grenoble France; “Whip it“ series in Sydney; various Precipice annual Improv workshops hosted by Tony Osbourne as well as hosting local/interstate/international improvisation nights in Canberra. He is the Director/Curator/Producer/Administrator at SoundOut festivals. As a sound artist he worked with renowned visual Artist Savanhdary Vongpoothorn for the Australia Exhibition at The Casula Power House as well collaborated with conceptual-visual artist Denise Higgins on soundscapes. He has performed with the likes of Jaap Blonk, Jon Rose, Hans Koch, Guylaine Cosseron, Jim Denley, Kim Myhr, Annette Giesreigl, Rodrigo Motoya, Antonio Panda Gianfratti, Thomas Rohrer, Luc Houtkamp, Clayton Thomas, Isaiah Ceccarelli, Yan Jun, Laura Altman, Michael Norris, Evan Dorian, etc. Currently performs in a wind trio with John Porter and Rhys Butler called Psithurism, which has a digital release with the renowned Canadian clarinetist Francois Houle. Also in June 2016 released Cd with Rhys Butler; Guylaine Cosseron and Stephen Roach called Swarm on SoundOut Cd’s 001.
Sally Anne McIntyre/Radio Cegeste – electronics – New Zealand
Sally Ann McIntyre is a writer, sound practitioner and radio artist working out of Dunedin, New Zealand. She has a history in independent radio production, and since 2008 has programmed the Mini FM station Radio Cegeste 104.5 as a small-radius platform for site-responsive radio art events. Her work oscillates around themes of site-specificity, nomadism, the non-monumental memorial, the collection of sound libraries, phonography, museology, translation and transcription, memory, the haunted materiality of absent presence, old buildings and other historic sites, psychogeography, the performative fragility of small-scale transmission, bird migration and electromagnetism, the complex idea of 'dead air', the recorded and transmitted history of birdsong (sometimes also as a sonification of a New Zealand nationalism), and the possibility of an ecology of the radio that doesn't represent unstable systems as functioning in eternal homeostasis. She has initiated projects in environments from the most remote to the most populous, such as ‘soundtracks for the city’, scoring urban Melbourne on inner city street corners with a portable record player by playing stacks of discarded library music on 10” disc from the channel 10 TV archives, to a set of recordings of gallery spaces destroyed in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake played back to an artist-run gallery space in another city about to lose its lease, to a series of EVP recordings of extinct native birds held in museum collections, transmitted back into remote wilderness areas of the New Zealand bush.
Sonya Hollowell - vocalist - Sydney
Sonya is an indigenous Australian vocalist and improviser of immense versatility and range, who presents unique vocal performances of exceptional music, whether ancient or new, pre-composed or sponteneous. She exlores the full scope of the voice as an instrument, and is currently developing her personal practice incorporating extended vocal technique, worship, warfare, spirit and truth. In 2014 Sonya was Young Artist Soprano with the Song Company, and has performed at many of the leading national and international music festivals as a soloist, ensemble singer and improviser. She has performed woth a number of ensembles at the forefront of contemporary music, including Ensemble Offspring, Australian Art Orchestra, Decibel, The Splinter Orchestra and Sydney Chamber Opera and has collaborated with many notable Australian and International Artists and composers of new music.
Xavier Charles – Clarinet- Trio RHRR – France
Xavier Charles is an active clarinetist in the world of improvised music, known from a variety of constellations and ensembles like ‘Dans les arbres’ (on the ECM label) and ‘Contest of Pleasures’. Currently his musical research ranges from performance on the clarinet and bass to the installation of vibrating speakers, at the edge of improvised music, noise and electro-acoustic sound. He has played in numerous new music fesivals in France and abroad. Charles also collaborates with Jacques Di Donato and Frederic Le Junter. In his other work with groups and collectives, he has also collaborated with Martin Tetrault, The Ex, Peirre Berthet, Etage 34, Axel Dörner, Jérôme Jeanmart, John Butcher, Jean Pallandre, Marc Pichelin, Chris Cutler, Martine Altenburger, Camel Zékri, Emmanuelle Pellegrini, Michel Donéda and Frédéric Blondy. The artist has composed for the theatre, most notably with the Theatre François Lazaro. He is further involved in the music world as an organizer of the fesival Densités (FR).