First Fridays with Robert Black
– Fri, Oct 1
First Fridays with Robert Black
October 1, 2021 at 12 noon ET
PROGRAM: “20th Century Giants”
John Cage – 59 1/2” (1953)
Elliott Carter – Figment III (2007)
Giacinto Scelsi – Mantram (undated)
Iannis Xenakis – Theraps (1976)
We’re back with Season 2 of First Fridays with Robert Black! This month’s program brings you “classic” pieces from some of the 20th Century’s major composers: John Cage’s minute-long piece jammed packed with squawks, squeaks, thumps, bumps and plenty of silence, the intense and dense lyricism of Elliott Carter, Giacinto Scelsi’s eastern tinged melismatic mantra, and a mind-boggling, Herculean epic from Iannis Xenakis.
First Fridays with Robert Black is a monthly series of virtual mini-concerts featuring brand-spanking new, recently new, and kind of new music for solo double bass – streaming from his home studio in Hartford, Connecticut, at noon (EST). Whether you’re having your morning coffee in Los Angeles, or lunch in New York, or that first glass of wine in Paris, or a late supper in Tashkent, tune in for some cool and compelling music.
This is a free concert! But please consider purchasing a ticket just the same. Doing so will help us to do more performances, pay more players, commission more composers, and share more music worldwide.
LOUD Weekend 2021 Reviewed in NY Times
What an exhilarating experience. Thank you to all who attended this year’s LOUD Weekend at MASS MoCA. We hope to have recordings and videos to share soon…in the meantime, here’s the review from the Old Gray Lady.
L’Rain at the Noguchi Museum
– Sept 24!
On Friday, September 24, 2021 at 6:30pm, Bang on a Can and The Noguchi Museum present the next concert in our Artists at Noguchi season. Celebrating our eleventh season of collaboration, the Bang on a Can | Artists at Noguchi series features musicians performing an inclusive blend of music from across genres and across the world.
Under the mononym, L’Rain, Brooklyn native Taja Cheek has quickly become an acclaimed figure in New York experimental music. A multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and vocalist, her songs are equally rooted in r&b, jazz, noise, and pop, at once visceral, spiritual, ethereal, and urgent. Her performances are informed by her interest in the history of contemporary art and the legacy of downtown performance in New York City. She is particularly interested in exploring the complex nuance of black grief and its proximity to black joy, using voice memos and other manipulated samples recorded in her hometown as inspiration and source material.
Tribute to Louis Andriessen
Everyone at Bang on a Can has been devastated by the loss of our friend, the great Dutch composer Louis Andriessen.
Our musical relationship with Louis goes back before Bang on a Can, to when we were young composers trying to figure out what making music could mean. As he did for young composers everywhere, he welcomed us, he taught us, he gave us a glimpse into a world in which a composer could be open to radical innovation, open to challenging music’s social place and power, open to building a community of composers and musicians who cared about each other, listened to each other, and helped each other. We learned so much from him.
Louis’ music has been a huge presence at Bang on a Can. One of the centerpieces of our very first event, the 1987 Marathon, was the US premiere of the 2 piano version of Louis’ De Staat, played by the fantastic Dutch group Pianoduo. Over the years we’ve performed Louis’ music many many times – the New York premiere of his monumental work De Tijd, the premiere of his heartbreaking piece with film – Life – which we commissioned and toured around the world, plus countless performances of Hoketus, Workers Union and Hout, and many more.
These performances all flowed from Louis’ greatness as a composer, but he meant so much more to us than that. We were constantly refreshed by his rebellious do-it-yourself spirit, his relentless pursuit of big ideas, his courageous and virtuosic impracticality, his fierce commitment to art, and the community of all who share it. His belief in the artistic spirit inspired us, embraced us, encouraged us, and we will continue to live with his spirit in our hearts.
-Michael, David, Julie