Friday 16 June 2017, 7.30pm
Art of Improvisers (15th to 22nd June 2017) presents a festival curated by Blanca Regina and Steve Beresford and affirms the importance of women in free improvisation and arts.
It presents, in a variety of ways, both the back history and the current state of women in free improvisation. It also looks at free improvisation’s strong, but rarely noted, connection to visual work.
Art of Improvisers is supported by Arts Council England,Cafe Oto,The British Music Collection,Sound and Music,Art+Feminism and is in association with the Wire 400.
More information at www.unpredictable.info
In association with The Wire 400
Steve has been a central figure in the British and international spontaneous music scenes for over forty years, freely improvising on piano, electronics and other things with people like Derek Bailey, Evan Parker, Han Bennink, John Zorn and Alterations.
He has written songs, written for large and small ensembles, and scored short films, feature films, TV shows and commercials. He was part of the editorial teams for 'Musics' and 'Collusion' magazines, writes about music in various contexts and was a senior lecturer in music at University of Westminster. With Blanca Regina, he is part of 'Unpredictable Series', which produces events and sound and video recordings of experimental music and art.
Steve has often worked with Christian Marclay on various Marclay mixed media pieces. Others he has worked with include The Slits, Najma Akhtar, Stewart Lee, Ivor Cutler, Prince Far-I, Alan Hacker, Tania Chen, Ray Davies, Mandhira De Saram, The Flying Lizards, Zeena Parkins, The Portsmouth Sinfonia, Ilan Volkov, Rachel Musson, Vic Reeves and Lore Lixenberg.
Beresford has an extensive discography as performer, arranger, free-improviser, composer and producer, and was was awarded a Paul Hamlyn award for composers in 2012.
Blanca Regina is an artist, teacher and curator based in London who is currently involved in creating audiovisual performances, sound works, instalations and film.
Her research and practice encompass sound art, free-improvisation, moving image, live events, electronic music and performance.
In 2014 she joined Event and Experience Design department at University of Kent.
From 2011-2014 she was visiting research fellow at Chelsea College of Arts & Design at University of the Arts London.
In 2010, she received a doctorate in Humanities from University Rey Juan Carlos, Madrid, with the thesis: The VJ and audiovisual performance: towards a radical aesthetic of postmodernism.
In London, she co-funded with Steve Beresford and later Jack Goldstein 'Strange Umbrellas', a platform for free improvised music and visual art. During 2012-2014 she curated performances at Music Hackspace. She is initial co-founder of the Live Cinema Foundation.
In 2011 with Matthias Kispert at Soundfjord she founded the Material Studies Group. Focusing at developing a series of workshops and performances open to everyone looking at the production of sound with everyday objects.
She has performed with various artists, including Terry Day, Leafcutter John, Beresford and Matthias Kispert and curated a number of events and installations in London and internationally. Her last exhibition: ‘Expanded and Ephemera Audiovisual’ was presented at MUPO, Oaxaca, México in November 2015
Current works in development include the direction of Unpredictable a film about Terry Day and 'Unpredictable series' a series of exhibitions, talks and performances.
David Toop (born 1949) has been developing a practice that crosses boundaries of sound, listening, music and materials since 1970. This encompasses improvised music performance, writing, electronic sound, field recording, exhibition curating, sound art installations and opera. It includes seven acclaimed books, including Rap Attack (1984), Ocean of Sound (1995), Sinister Resonance (2010), Into the Maelstrom (2016) and forthcoming - Flutter Echo, a memoir first published in Japan in 2017 (May 2019) and Inflamed Invisible: Writing On Art and Sound 1976-2018 (2020). Briefly a member of David Cunningham’s pop project The Flying Lizards in 1979, he has released thirteen solo albums, from New and Rediscovered Musical Instruments on Brian Eno’s Obscure label (1975) and Sound Body on David Sylvian’s Samadhisound label (2006) to Entities Inertias Faint Beings (2016). His 1978 Amazonas recordings of Yanomami shamanism and ritual were released on Sub Rosa as Lost Shadows (2016). In recent years his collaborations include Rie Nakajima, Akio Suzuki, Tania Chen, John Butcher, Ken Ikeda, Elaine Mitchener, Henry Grimes, Sharon Gal, Camille Norment, Sidsel Endresen, Alasdair Roberts, Thurston Moore, Ryuichi Sakamoto and a revived Alterations, the iconoclastic improvising quartet with Steve Beresford, Peter Cusack and Terry Day first formed in 1977. Curator of sound art exhibitions including Sonic Boom at the Hayward Gallery (2000), his opera – Star-shaped Biscuit – was performed as an Aldeburgh Faster Than Sound project in 2012. He is currently Professor of Audio Culture and Improvisation at London College of Communication.
Terry is an improviser, multi-instrumentalist, lyricist, song writer, visual artist and poet. He is a ‘first generation’ pioneer improviser from the 1960s.
A self-taught musician in a family of musicians, he began improvising on the drums with his brother in 1955. In the early 1960s he formed the Hardy Holman Day trio focusing on free improvisation. Later he became part of Kilburn & the Highroads, a band led by Ian Dury.
Sharing their interest in visual art and painting, Terry and Ian both studied at Walthamstow School of Art and later at the Royal College of Art, London. As an art student in the 1960s he was a pioneer of improvisation, free jazz & experimental music.
Day also formed a duo with Derek Bailey in the late 1960s and was a regular member of The Continuous Music Ensemble, later known as The People Band. Since then he has collaborated with many musical luminaries, groups, dancers, painters, poets and performed in theatre, events, and rock & roll.
Rie Nakajima is a Japanese artist working with installations and performances that produce sound, often using a combination of kinetic devices and found objects. She has exhibited and performed widely both in the UK and overseas and has produced ‘Sculpture’ with David Toop since 2013. She also has a collaborative project ‘Dead Plants/Living Objects’ with Pierre Berthet, and recently released the CD ‘Dethick’ with Angharad Davies and Alice Purton.
Maggie Nicols joined London's legendary Spontaneous Music Ensemble in 1968 as a free improvisation vocalist. She then became active running voice workshops with an involvement in local experimental theatre. She later joined the group Centipede, led by Keith and Julie Tippets and in 1977, with musician/composer Lindsay Cooper, formed the remarkable Feminist Improvising Group. She continues performing and recording challenging and beautiful work, in music and theatre, either in collaborations with a range of artists (Irene Schweitzer, Joelle Leandre, Ken Hyder, Caroline Kraabel) as well as solo.
Gina Southgate is an artist who, through a growing interest in music and the aesthetic of musical instruments, began to paint at gigs. She is well known on the London free music and jazz scene where she has painted and performed live at gigs for 25 years.