Long Play Festival! May 5-7, 2023

Bang on a Can announces the 2nd year of Long Play, a three-day destination music festival, presented from Friday, May 5 through Sunday, May 7, 2023. Featuring 50+ concerts, Long Play also showcases a dense network of inventive music venues in Brooklyn – with performances at Pioneer Works, Roulette, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Public Records, Littlefield, BRIC, Mark Morris Dance Center, The Center for Fiction, plus outdoor events and more. A limited number of 3-day festival passes are on sale now at www.longplayfestival.org including MEMORY GAME, a special opening-night concert featuring Meredith Monk and Vocal Ensemble with the electric Bang on a Can All-Stars, doubling as an 80th Birthday Bash (co-presented with The Town Hall at Pioneer Works)!

Some featured artists in the 2023 lineup include Art Ensemble of Chicago, Philip Glass Ensemble, Dawn Richard and Spencer Zahn, Mount Eerie, Tyshawn Sorey, and many others.

Bang on a Can’s Co-Founders and Artistic Directors Michael Gordon, David Lang, and Julia Wolfe, say of Long Play:

Music, right now!  What is it, you might ask?  You know, we can’t tell you!  And that is a good thing.  There is so much music happening that no one can pin it all down.  Loud music, soft music. Delicate music, rugged music. Written down music, improvised music.  Music for speeding up and music for slowing down. All around the world, musicians are innovating wildly, creating revolutionary sounds and experiences that no one could have imagined without them. And where is all this happening, you might ask?  That we can answer!  In Brooklyn, crossroads of the world, where musicians and audiences and peoples and sounds from everywhere come together. You can see and hear them all, on LONG PLAY.

More info

Julia Wolfe

Julia Wolfe’s Her Story with the Boston Symphony March 16-18

Conductor Giancarlo Guerrero conducts the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Lorelei Ensemble in Julia Wolfe’s Her Story, a new work that captures the passion and perseverance of women who have led the fight for representation and gender equality. A 40-minute theatrical experience, the piece is the latest in a series of compositions by Wolfe that highlights monumental and turbulent moments in American history.

Performance dates and times:

More info and tickets

LOUD Weekend Festival at MASS MoCA is July 27-29

Bang on a Can and MASS MoCA announce the 2023 edition of our multi-day music festival called LOUD Weekend, presented on Thursday, July 27 through Saturday, July 29, 2023, at MASS MoCA. LOUD Weekend features three days of ear-bending music and mind-blowing art exhibitions taking place throughout the museum’s vast galleries and its stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues.

LOUD Weekend 2023 (additional artists and more details to be announced): 

  • KRONOS Five Decades – the singular legendary Kronos Quartet perform TWO concerts celebrating their 50th anniversary season.
  • Love in Exile – a brand new collaborative album and tour featuring experimental super trio Arooj Aftab, Vijay Iyer, and Shahzad Ismaily kicks off LOUD Weekend on Thursday night, 7/27.
  • David Lang explores our eternal fascination with death, love, family and suicide in the concert premiere of his newest chamber opera, note to a friendbased on three haunting texts by iconic Japanese novelist Ryunosuke Akutagawa. Featuring Theo Bleckmann, vocal.
  • The electric Bang on a Can All-Stars (NY) team up and face-off with the Netherland’s Ensemble Klang (NL) for the US premiere of Pete Harden’s heavy hocketing hoedown Forgiveness and Forgetting. 
  • Time and distance collapse in the music of the Catalan folk duo Tarta Relena. With little more than their two voices, Helena Ros and Marta Torrella connect the far corners of the Mediterranean, drawing on traditions stretching back more than a thousand years (Pitchfork).
  • Composer Paola Prestini and cellist Jeffrey Zeigler pair up for Houses of Zodiac: Poems for Cello, an installation-concert drawing inspiration from the writings of Anaïs Nin, Pablo Neruda, Brenda Shaughnessy, and Natasha Trethewey to explore the intersection of mind, body, and nature, with films by Murat Eyuboglu.
  • All-time powerhouse composer Joan Tower returns to LOUD Weekend with her brand new piece  Into the Night. 
  • Composer Oscar Bettison’s mega-work O Death, mixes saxophones, trombone, banjo and piano with jaw’s harps, harmonicas, recorders, melodica, flower pots and prepared wrenches, performed by Ensemble Klang, all the way from Holland!
  • The return of composer Jeffrey Brooks to LOUD Weekend – with the world premiere of his latest work in the Stein-o-caster series for an ingeniously amplified piano played with paint brushes.
  • Special guest composers Andy Akiho, Nicole Lizée, David Sanford, and more. 
  • WORLD PREMIERES by the 2023 summer festival composition fellows. 
  • Music by Bang on a Can co-founders Michael Gordon and Julia Wolfe.
  • Performances by Gregg August, Robert Black, Vicky Chow, David Cossin, Arlen Hlusko, Nick Photinos, Todd Reynolds, Mark Stewart, Maya Stone, Ken Thomson, plus fellows from the 2023 Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA.

More info and tickets

Bang on a Can honors Robert Black, March 9 at the Hartt School

The Bang on a Can All-Stars, along with Bang on a Can’s artistic directors and founders, Michael Gordon, David Lang, and Julia Wolfe, are honored to celebrate the work of bassist Robert Black, a founding member of the All-Stars, who is retiring from his University of Hartford, Hartt School of Music, faculty position after 29 years!


  • David Lang – Cheating Lying Stealing
  • Michael Gordon – I Buried Paul
  • Julia Wolfe – Believing
  • George Lewis – Float, Sting
  • Meredith Monk – Spaceship
  • Philip Glass – Closing
  • Thurston Moore – Stroking Piece #1

More info and tickets

photo of Robert by Stephanie Berger

Applications for the 2023 Media Workshop at the Bang on a Can Summer Festival are due Apr 11!

Bang on a Can Media Workshop at MASS MoCA

An exploration of contemporary music criticism and journalism

July 22 – 30, 2023

More info and online application

Applications due April 11!
There is no application fee.

“One of the most meaningful and impactful experiences of my writing career thus far.”  – Maggie Molloy, workshop participant

Bang on a Can, our special guest faculty John Schaefer and Terrance McKnight, and 6 writers in the early stages of their careers will gather at MASS MoCA (the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams, MA) to explore the role of criticism and journalism in today’s dynamic contemporary music scene.

The aim of the workshop is to help writers generate a vocabulary, syntax, and context that is most useful for readers/ listeners and to make modern music and criticism more accessible, welcoming, and exciting to all audiences.

The workshop will take place during the final week of the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA (July 22-30, 2023) — a residency and festival for composers and performers (12 faculty, 21 performers, and 9 composers) and will include daily meetings with faculty and daily writing assignments. Additionally, participants will be “embedded” in the festival activities, attending rehearsals, workshops, and performances, enabling more insights into the process of bringing music to the stage.

More info and online application

Photo of John Schaefer by @thesundncekid for On Air Fest
Photo of Terrance McKnight by Julie Yarbrough Photography

Bang on a Can All-Stars, Live

Bang on a Can in Colombia – Feb 18-25

Bang on a Can brings South America their first ever Bang on a Can Marathon along with a week full of workshops, conferences, and performances in Medellín and Bogotá, Colombia!

Saturday Feb 18:  Bang on a Can All-Stars perform “Classics” in Medellin. More info.

Monday Feb 20: Workshop: Young Composer Reading and Bang on a Can lecture/demonstration in Bogotá – with Colombian composers Andrés Felipe Poveda, Juan Manuel Jaramillo, Jesús Buendia Puyo.  More info

Wednesday Feb 22:  Bang on a Can All-Stars perform “Classics” in Bogotá, including a pre-concert talk with Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe and Betto Arcos. More info

Thursday Feb 23: Bang on a Can All-Stars perform “Road Trip” in Bogotá including a pre-concert talk with Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe and Betto Arcos. More info

Friday Feb 24: Conference: “Bang on a Can: in search of other music” – The founding composers of Bang on a Can will talk about how their music connects with other communities, other instruments and other stories. More info

Saturday Feb 25: Bang on a Can Marathon – the first ever in South America! The Marathon in Bogotá will feature the Bang on a Can All-Stars alongside an incredibly diverse and amazing lineup of Colombian composers and performers. The concert features many different ensembles and soloists from different musical and cultural backgrounds including classical, jazz, and traditional Colombian and American traditions. More info

Bang on a Can All-Stars download original

Peter Serling

The All-Stars perform CAN DANCE in California (1/29) and Oregon (2/1)

The Bang on a Can All-Stars bring CAN DANCE to California and Oregon!

January 29 – Rohnert Park, CA

February 1 – Portland, OR

Live music and dance on film! CAN DANCE is the Bang on a Can All-Stars’ newest show is a seamless integration of cutting-edge music, revolutionary dance, and film. Nine extraordinary choreographers have been commissioned to create dance/films to music written for and performed by the Bang on a Can All-Stars

Please support Bang on a Can with a year-end gift!

Inspiration is everywhere. Our job is to share it. Will you help us?

Maybe this will sound as crazy to you as it does to us. But in 2022, Bang on a Can produced more in-person concerts than any year since our beginning in 1987.  Incredible, right? It’s true — and we could only do this with your help and support!

Donate here

Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum present Morton Feldman’s “For John Cage” – Dec 15

Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum present:

Morton Feldman’s “For John Cage”

Thursday Dec 15, 2022 – 7:30p

Towards the end of his life, Feldman wrote several “tribute” pieces to people who had been important to him among them, For John Cage (1982), and it has become one of Feldman’s most well-known pieces. For John Cage will be performed by Karl Larson on piano and Erica Dicker, violin in conjunction with the exhibition New York: 1962-1964.

More info and tickets

Michael Gordon’s “Travel Guide to Nicaragua” – Nov 17

On November 17, at Zankel Hall, cutting-edge cellist Maya Beiser and “America’s most astonishing choir” (The New York Times), The Crossing will form a fearless partnership to present Travel Guide to Nicaragua, a New York premiere by Bang on a Can co-founder Michael Gordon. The evening-length work, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall, tells the story of Gordon’s family’s journey from Poland to Nicaragua, beginning with his grandfather and concluding with Gordon’s childhood in the jungle on the outskirts of Managua.

More info and tickets

Image by Laurie Olinder