What do the Bang on a Can All-Stars look like as animated aardvarks? Find out this Wednesday when the band visits the PBS KIDS’s popular cartoon ARTHUR, in an episode called Binky’s Music Madness airing nationwide on May 14, as part of ARTHUR Arts Week!

For the occasion, we’re offering ARTHUR fans (and the public in general) a FREE DOWNLOAD of the music featured on the episode, from the All-Stars 2012 album Big Beautiful Dark and Scary. Two years in the making, the animated All-Stars lineup includes founding Bang on a Can All-Star clarinetist Evan Ziporyn, percussionist David Cossin, guitarist Mark Stewart, bassist Robert Black, cellist Ashley Bathgate, and pianist Vicky Chow. Bang on a Can co-founder composer Julia Wolfe is also portrayed and recorded her own speaking role for the episode.
 

Julia Wolfe's long awaited Steel Hammer featuring the Bang on a Can All-Stars and Trio Mediaeval is now available on Cantaloupe Music

Inspired by her love for the music and lore of Appalachia, Julia Wolfe based her text for Steel Hammer (called a “wild hybrid” by The New York Times) on over 200 versions of the John Henry ballad, exploring the subject of human vs. machine in the quintessential American legend. Featuring the haunting vocalizations of Norway’s Trio Mediaeval, Steel Hammer also stretches the standard instrumentation of the Bang on a Can All-Stars with wooden bones, mountain dulcimer, banjo and more.

Thank you to all who joined us in paying tribute to a great friend and colleague, Mary Lou Aleskie, at this year's annual benefit! Executive Director of the renowned International Festival of Arts & Ideas in New Haven, Connecticut, Mary Lou’s continued support for our work and her dedication to so many other remarkable artists and arts professionals and the field as a whole is truly visionary!

The evening at City Winery featured performances by our very own Bang on a Can All-Stars, Cynthia Hopkins, and Don Byron. Stay tuned for pictures coming soon!

 

On May 30 & 31, Julia Wolfe's newest work Anthracite Fields received its New York Premiere at the NY PHIL BIENNIAL!

Anthracite Fields explores coal-mining life and the fields of central Pennsylvania near Wolfe's hometown. She draws from oral histories, interviews, speeches, geographic descriptions, local rhymes, and coal advertisements in creating a unique oratorio that provides an intimate look at a particular slice of American life. The multi-media live performance features scenography and projections by Jeff Sugg.  

On April 18, the Bang on a Can All-Stars perform new and recently commissioned works from their impressive collaborations with leading Japanese composers plus celebrated core selections from their innovative American and Asian repertoire.

The program at Stony Brook's Charles B. Wang Center Theatre features works by Mamoru Fujieda, Akiko Ushijima, Somei Satoh, Tan Dun, Julia Wolfe, and Steve Martland.

It's party time again. And YOU'RE invited! Michael Gordon wants to tell you all about it here.

Join us for the Second Annual "Banglewood Benefit" this April 30 from 8pm- midnight at JACK, a performance space in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. Last year's party was a raging success, with a live karaoke band of Banglewood Alums and dozens of high-energy singers who will not be quitting their day jobs. And we raised $10,000 towards the Festival!

This year, we're doing an informal concert followed by a wild and wooly dance party. We'll be treated to a smorgasbord of great musical bits from alums David Broome, Ruby Fulton, Adam Cuthbert, Joe Tucker, New Thread Quartet, Nouveau Classical Project, kills to kisses, and more, plus a special appearance by Polygraph Lounge, featuring Bang on a Can All-Star Mark Stewart and Rob Schwimmer, along with All-Star David Cossin. And then DJ Jacob Cooper will "tear the roof off the sucka."

On April 11, the Bang on a Can All-Stars return to The Atlas Performing Arts Center in Washington, D.C. for Andriessen 75, a week-long festival celebrating the 75th birthday of longtime mentor, friend, and collaborator Louis Andriessen.

On the program is David Lang's cheating, lying, stealing; Michael Gordon's I Buried Paul; Steve Martland's Horses of Instruction; Julia Wolfe's Believing, and Louis Andriessen's Life and Workers Union.

More information and tickets.

Michael Gordon's newest album Rushes is now available on Cantaloupe Music!

Composed for seven bassoons, Rushes takes its place alongside Michael Gordon's Timber for expanding the boundaries of a single instrument's repertoire into unknown (and at times, otherworldly) spaces. Rushes brings out tonal and timbral aspects of the bassoon that are meant to induce a quasi-meditative, almost ecstatic state, in the listener as well as the performer.

As Michael Gordon describes, "The name comes from the tall grass that's reminiscent of the reeds that bassoon players use. It also refers to an ecstatic rush, a euphoria that I'm trying to build. It's very visceral for the players, who are playing basically nonstop for an hour, and that requires a sense of intensity and concentration."

Read more and purchase the album.