Friday, May 6, 202212:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

The May 6th “First Friday with Robert Black” will include 2 sonic delights. Miya Masaoka’s Four Moons of Pluto takes us to a beautiful, other-worldly place via a specially tuned double bass – pulsating overtones and beating harmonics are nested in a static and meditative soundscape. Valentine by Jacob Druckman delivers a cornucopia of taps, squeaks, whispers, thumps, bumps, and plucks with a timpani mallet in a theatrically tinged explosion of extended techniques.

Program
Four Moons of Pluto (2015) – Miya Masaoka
Valentine (1969) – Jacob Druckman

 

Friday, April 1, 202212:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

The April 1st First Friday with Robert Black will feature a special video presentation of  Post-Natural Pastorale by the composers/sound artists Brian House and Sue Huang (with animation by Alexander Dupuis).  Robert, Brian and Sue recorded this 8-channel audio and video piece entirely at the 2,200 acre Freshkills Landfill on Staten Island in New York City.  The bucolic serenity of this reclaimed mammoth monument of the Anthropocene belies the chaos that lies beneath.  Nature meets throwaway consumer culture.

Video Credits:
Animation: Alexander Dupuis
Producer: Mariel Villere
Co-Producer: David Feinberg
Director of Photography: Paul Shin

Friday, March 4, 202212:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

Program:

Robert Black – Instant Compositions (today)

Digital delay, flanger, pitch shifter, distortion, chorusing, reverb, and more – meet the electronic genies in the bottle of effects processing.  For the March 4 First Fridays with Robert Black, these electronic muses and their digital inspiration team up with Robert’s double bass to create Instant Compositions.  Meet Robert in the Zone and discover what’s going to happen as it is happening.

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.

Friday, February 4, 202212:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

Program: “Multi-Bass”

Angélica Negrón: La Isla Mágica 
Julia Wolfe: Stronghold 

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.

Friday, January 7, 202212:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

Program: “New Faces”

Nyokabi Kariūki  –  One, Your Name (2020)
Eliot Burk –  blue and black marks athwart the weald, which releases (2021)
Hannah Selin –  Tributaries I (2021)
Katherine Bodor –  Fantasizing About Quitting My Day Job (2021)

Music that pushes the boundaries, that stays within the boundaries, that exists outside the boundaries, that expands the boundaries – that’s what you’ll hear on the January 7, 2022 First Fridays with Robert Black.  New music for a new year from new composers Nyokabi Kariūki, Eliot Burk, Hannah Selin, and Katherine Bodor.  New and Now.

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.

December 10December 12, 20217:00pm

In C with Sasha Waltz & Guests


Berlin, Germany

On December 10-12, 2021 at radialsystem Berlin, the Bang on a Can All-Stars will give their first performances abroad since the pandemic. Celebrated German dance company Sasha Waltz & Guests present their latest work, In C, for the first time with live music, performed by the Bang on a Can All-Stars. In C is a brand new dynamic dance work based on Terry Riley’s revolutionary and open composition by the same name.

The December 12 performance will be live-streamed on live.bangonacan.org

Friday, December 3, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

Program: “Strange Places”
Michael Gordon – Paint It Black (1988/91)
John Luther Adams – Three High Places (2017)

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.

Friday, November 5, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

This month, First Fridays with Robert Black will delve deep into the collective “Bass Players for Black Composers.” This new organization is on a mission to connect talented, black composers with new performers and audiences. We’re going to hear cool grooves, ambient beauty, quirky energy, joyful sonics, delightful double bass doings, and more from Yaz Lancaster, Nick Dunston, Mason Bynes, and Joy Guidry.

PROGRAM

Yaz Lancaster – Wind_Down_2 (2020)
Mason Bynes – The [WRECK}oning (2020)
Nick Dunston – Mulch Awareness Month (2020)
Joy Guidry – In My Bed (2020)

Friday, October 1, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

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 - Feb 5

Friday, August 6, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM
Jakhongir Shukur: Potter’s Wheel
Carman Moore: STALLION
James Sellars: Prelude from Suite

The August edition of First Fridays with Robert Black brings you three master compositions by three master composers – Jakhongir Shukur’s Potter’s Wheel, a gently beguiling perpetual motion machine, Carman Moore’s STALLION, a charming and witty gallop, and the achingly beautiful Prelude by James Sellars from his 5 movement Suite.  A program guaranteed to touch the heart, titillate the mind, and make you smile.

Friday, July 2, 202112:00pm

First Friday with Robert Black

Quiet. Still. Beautiful. Gentle. Calm. Hypnotic. Fascinating. This month, First Fridays with Robert Black immerses you in the simple yet complex sound world of Marcel Zaes with his Moments of Doubt. Hear the tender tones of 5 double basses (4 recorded, 1 live) rhythmically rub against each other to deliver you into a state of suspended animation where time stops, hierarchies melt, and transformation is possible.

June 61:00pm5:00pm

Bang on a Can Live Online – Marathon of Song

The Bang on a Can Marathon of Song features 15 performances streamed from musicians’ homes around the country and across the world. For this Marathon, all performances will include some type of vocalization – singing, speaking, murmuring, or other use of the voice.

“Humming, speaking, crooning, shouting, praying, tuneful, harmonized or noisy, we have spun songs since the beginning of our existence. These adventurous composers are redefining what it means to make song, and these powerful performers bring it to life with a myriad of colors and sensibilities.”– Michael Gordon, David Lang, and Julia Wolfe

Friday, June 4, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

This month, First Fridays with Robert Black takes a deep dive into the world of the double bass with bass music written by bass players. Transport yourself with the raga-inspired Poucha Dass by François Rabbath, meditate with the peaceful In Memorium from Rodrigo Mata, surf the sonic joy in Sonia Ray’s Ondas, headbang to the energy of Emil Tabakov’s Motivy, and let Xavier Dubois Foley’s Letting Go chill you out. Deep tones and good vibes. Remember, it’s all about the bass.

photo by Stephanie Berger

Friday, May 7, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

The May First Friday with Robert Black brings us Bass Beginnings – music from the mid-20th Century “Big Bang” moment that started the formation of an entirely new universe of music for the instrument – a universe that is continually expanding at an astronomical pace.  Hear the jazz-tinged music of Barney Childs, modern lyricism from George Perle, and William Sydeman’s vibrant color palette.  The Future was then.  The Future is now.

Program:

Barney Childs – Sonata for Bass Alone

George Perle – Monody II

William Sydeman – For Double Bass Alone

.

First Fridays with Robert Black - Jan 1

Sunday, April 18, 20211:00pm

Bang on a Can Marathon – Live Online

PROGRAM
Michael Abels: Anguish from Falling Sky (world premiere) for Vicky Chow
Joan La Barbara: ad astra… for cellist who sings (world premiere) for Iva Casian-Lakos
Anton Batagov: Chaconne in A minor (world premiere)
Rudresh Mahanthappa: How Was Your Year? (world premiere) for Ken Thomson
Timo Andres: House Calls (world premiere) for David Byrd-Marrow
Leyla McCalla: Meditation #1 (world premiere) for Arlen Hlusko
John Hollenbeck: Persuasion (world premiere) for David Cossin
Carman Moore: STALLION (world premiere) for Robert Black
Kelly Moran: new work (world premiere)
Michael Fiday: Song for Eric (world premiere) for Jeff Anderle
Jonathan Bailey Holland: Subaquatic Meditation (world premiere) for Mark Stewart
Michael Daugherty: Six Riffs after Ovid for solo oboe (world premiere) for Titus Underwood
Soo Yeon Lyuh: See You on the Other Side (world premiere)

New Commissions! On April 18, Bang on a Can presents its 2nd entire marathon of PREMIERES! 15 brand new works by 15 pioneering composers. Tune in to hear 4 hours of nonconformist, noncommercial, mind-blowing music.

Friday, April 2, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM:
Maria Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir – Pending
Žibuokle Martinaityte – Abyssal Zone
Krists Auznieks – Arise

April’s “First Fridays with Robert Black” brings you large music from small countries. Experience pieces from Iceland’s Maria Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir, Lithuania’s Martinaitytė Žibuokle, and Latvia’s Krists Auznieks. Deep oceans – expansive skies – dazzling lights – music that shares a fascination with ethereal sounds and earthly sonics. Chill with the aural aurora, celebrate at the harmonics happening, immerse in the overtone orgy.

Sunday, March 7, 20213:00pm

Sonatra Watch Party

On March 7, we present the video premiere of Bang on a Can All-Star Vicky Chow’s performance of Michael Gordon’s Sonatra as a Watch Party. The program will include a Q & A about the work with Chow and Gordon, moderated by Ethan Iverson, also a pianist, composer, and critic best known for his work with the Bad Plus. Aside from Chow’s album release of the work (released February 23, 2018 on Cantaloupe Music – get it here!), this new video made by Denver-based director, writer, and cinematographer Souki Mehdaoui, is the only other recording of the piece.

Saturday, March 6, 20212:00pm

Sasha Waltz & Guests dancing to In C

Celebrated German Dance Company Sasha Waltz & Guests presents a live-from-Berlin viewing of a new dance performance to Terry Riley’s In C.

In 1964, Terry Riley kicked off a revolution with his landmark piece, In C. In 2001, Bang on a Can released a recording of their interpretation of the minimalist classic with a singular combination of amplified instruments from around the globe, propelling Riley’s transcendental masterpiece into the future. This recording on Cantaloupe Music was on The New York Times’ Top 10 Classical CDs of 2001 and Top 10 Pop CDs of 2001, as well as the No. 1 Ambient/Instrumental Record in Pulse.

On March 6, the Berlin-based dance company Sasha Waltz & Guests offers a live viewing of a brand new and innovative artistic process incorporating both digitally recorded and live formats, based on the musical foundation of In C. Waltz and her dancers have developed choreographic material that follows a similarly variable structure and is deliberately designed not to be a finished stage piece. This performance will be set to Bang on a Can’s 2001 recording (get it here!)

Friday, March 5, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM
James Tenney: Beast
Stuart Saunders Smith: Tunnels
Rifat Komachkov: Sonata

The March edition of “First Fridays with Robert Black” basks in some highly unusual music from an already unusual repertoire. Hear what happens at the intersection of Science and Art in James Tenney’s Beast, witness the dazzling wordplay theatrics of Stuart Saunders Smith’s Tunnels, and marvel at the bizarre bowing techniques of Rifat Komachkov’s Sonata. Music that will fascinate, electrify, and amaze.

Friday, February 5, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM
Nick Dunston: Fainting is Down, Whooshing is Up
Ailie Robertson: The Bells Are All Silent
Ken Thomson: Birds and Ambulances

This performance revisits three recently premiered works from this season’s Bang on a Can Marathons. Hear the wild and wonderous energy of Nick Dunston, the tender and touching music from Ailie Robertson and Ken Thomson’s powerful yet poignant pandemic portrait. If you heard these pieces on one of the Bang on a Can Marathons, then you’ll enjoy a deeper dive into the music. If you’re hearing them for the first time, well…. you’re in for a treat!

First Fridays with Robert Black - Feb 5

Thursday, February 4, 20217:30pm

Laraaji and L’Rain Live Online

Originally conceived and programmed for the Long Play festival, Bang on a Can, BOMB Magazine, and The Jewish Museum will collaboratively present a live concert performance by Laraaji from his home studio in New York City, and L’Rain and Laraaji in conversation.

This bill showcases a pair of artists, both long champions of NYC’s DIY music scene, who represent two distinct voices in the evolution of ambient music. Bang on a Can and BOMB Magazine will present a live concert performance by Laraaji from his home studio in New York City, and L’Rain and Laraaji in conversation.

Laraaji and L'Rain Live Online

Friday, January 1, 202112:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

“First Fridays with Robert Black” welcomes the New Year with music by Robert. First on the program is “IT Music” – whimsical and quirky musical miniatures where the double bass is played every which way except the ‘normal’ way. Favorites include Zip IT, Beat IT, Rub IT, See IT, Creak IT, and more! Up next will be “The Possessed Improvisations” – music from Robert’s “Possessed” project – a series of improvisations with nature in the wild, rugged, and spiritual canyonlands of Southwestern Utah. Feel the bliss-factor.

“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.

First Fridays with Robert Black - Jan 1

Friday, December 4, 202012:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM
David Lang: i feel pretty
Tyson Davis: Tableau No. V

2020’s final “First Fridays with Robert Black” will feature composers David Lang and Tyson Davis. The program opens with David Lang’s i feel pretty, a 9-minute, intense, relentless, in-your-face, distortion-heavy explosion. It’s a punk-hot tour-de-force. Tyson Davis’ miniature Tableau No. V follows with the more controlled heat of modernism’s angular rhythms, crunchy dissonances, and dark melodies. The temperature comes down even further with the swank and suave grooves of David Lang’s snow falls i, ii, iii – music which is both cool and ‘Cool.’

First Fridays with Robert Black

November 1512:00pm4:00pm

OneBeat Marathon – a Global Celebration

PROGRAM
Alexander Arkincheev, OneBeat Russia – Irkutsk, Russia
Amir El Saffar, OneBeat 2012 – NYC, USA
Dumama & Kechou feat. Hunterchee, OneBeat 2018 – Berlin, Germany | Cape Town, South Africa | NYC, USA
Jinda Kanjo, OneBeat Istanbul – Kobani, Syria
TIGAtrio, OneBeat 2015 – Ng Chor Guan, Jay Afrisando, Daniel de Mendoza – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia | Minneapolis, USA | Bogotá, Colombia
Kyungso Park, OneBeat 2012 – Seoul, South Korea
Dahlak Brathwaite, OneBeat 2014 – Sacramento, USA
Meng Xi, Jess Tsang, Amy Garapic, OneBeat 2019 – Beijing, China | NYC, USA
Shruti Bhave, OneBeat 2019 – Mumbai, India
LADAMA, OneBeat 2014 & 2015 – Lara Klaus, Daniela Serna, Mafer Bandola, Sara Lucas & Pat Swoboda – Recife, Brazil | Bogotá, Colombia | Barquisimeto, Venezuela | NYC, USA
Asantewa, OneBeat 2016 – Accra, Ghana
Samah Boulmona, OneBeat 2018 – Beirut, Lebanon
Anna RG, OneBeat 2016 – Queens, NY, USA
Peni Candra Rini, OneBeat 2014 – Jakarta, Indonesia
Mustelide, OneBeat 2017 – Minsk, Belarus
Aurora Nealand, OneBeat 2013 – New Orleans, USA
Johanna Amaya Conejo, OneBeat 2017 – Bogotá, Colombia
Biodun Kuti, OneBeat 2013 – Mark Stewart, OneBeat Collaborating Artist – Philadelphia, USA | North Adams, USA

Bang on a Can is excited to present the OneBeat Marathon – Live Online – on Sunday, November 15, 2020 from 12-4pm ET, curated by Found Sound Nation, its social engagement wing. Over four hours the OneBeat Marathon will feature live-streamed multimedia performances by musicians from 14 countries stretching over five continents to transport audiences to a paradigm-bending sonic universe.

OneBeat Marathon - a Global Celebration

Friday, November 6, 202012:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM
Colin Bright: Flatlands (from Young Green Tree – Song of the Republic) (1993)
Kate Moore: The Hermit Thrush and the Astronaut (2012)

First Fridays with Robert Black continues on Friday November 6, 2020 with some trippy music from Australia. First up will be music from Young Green Tree – “Song of the Republic” by Colin Bright. This music, inspired by the 1887 Henry Lawson nationalist poem of the same title, is itself under the spell of the vast timelessness of the Outback. Kate Moore’s “The Hermit Thrush and the Astronaut” rounds out the show. Full of buzzing energy, it is inspired by “the infinitely varied birdsong of the hermit thrush and the stone engraving of an astronaut on the door of the Salamanca cathedral in Spain – it is something ancient, something modern, something timeless.”

Robert Black "First Friday"

Wednesday, October 28, 20208:00pm

Bang on a Can at the Noguchi – Meredith Monk & John Hollenbeck Duet Behavior 2020

Celebrating their tenth year of collaboration, on Wednesday, October 28, 2020 at 8pm ET, Bang on a Can and The Noguchi Museum present excerpts from Duet Behavior 2020 by Meredith Monk and John Hollenbeck, a first-time performance of Monk’s music as it has never been experienced. Through a conversational approach, long-time friends and colleagues Monk and Hollenbeck will expand and improvise on pieces from across Monk’s 50+ year catalogue, combining her pioneering vocal magic with his inventive and masterful percussion to generate new arrangements of Monk’s iconic compositions.

The Noguchi Museum’s director Brett Littman will join Monk and Hollenbeck for a Q & A via Zoom after the performance.

Bang on a Can at the Noguchi - Meredith Monk & John Hollenbeck Duet Behavior 2020

Friday, October 2, 202012:00pm

First Fridays with Robert Black

PROGRAM:
Hans Werner Henze: S. Biagio 9 Agosto ore 1207 (1977)
Peter Velikonja: Uncle (1990)

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 my home studio in Hartford, Connecticut, the October 2, noon (EDT) program will include the dark, somber, brooding lyricism of Hans Werner Henze’s S. Biagio 9 Agosto Ore 1207 contrasted with the bright, mesmerizing, resonant patterns of Peter Velikonja’s Uncle.  So, 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.

First Fridays with Robert Black