1–3 December 2018

The Twentieth Anniversary London Improvisers Orchestra

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Improvisation permeates our existence, surfacing in most of our behaviour and interactions: conversation, relationships, work and the market place; in art, in spirituality … (and in conflicts, with their unpredictability and IEDs).

Even thinking – taking into account our inner world and our surroundings, both ever-changing, and then trying to reconcile these in a way that creates some meaning and does violence to neither – contains a large serving of improvisation.

It is probably the case that the larger the group involved, the more difficult it is to create a collective improvisation that is effective and allows space for everyone. The London Improvisers Orchestra has been tackling this challenge by rehearsing and performing in London once a month for the past twenty years, exploring free, conducted and devised large-group improvisations, and developing an extensive and unique vocabulary of signals for improvising musicians.

For these anniversary events we have brought together a stellar line-up of local and international musicians and composer/conductors who have played with the London Improvisers Orchestra at different times over the past twenty years.

The Twentieth Anniversary London Improvisers Orchestra is supported using public funding by Arts Council England, and by PRS Foundation’s Open Fund for Organisations and the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia.




Susan Alcorn (USA, pedal steel guitar)
Knut Aufermann (Germany, electronics; composer)
Steve Beresford (piano; composer)
Alison Blunt (violin; composer)
Adam Bohman (objects)
Sarah Gail Brand (trombone)
John Butcher (saxophones)
Paloma Carrasco-Lopez (Spain, cello)
John Edwards (double bass)
Susanna Ferrar (violin)
Jaques Foschia (clarinets)
Sylvia Hallett (violin)
Charlotte Hug (Switzerland, viola/voice; composer)
Charlotte Keeffe (trumpet)
Hyelim Kim (S. Korea/UK, taegum)
Julie Kjaer (Denmark, saxophone/clarinet/flute)
Caroline Kraabel (alto sax/voice; composer)
Hannah Marshall (cello)
Neil Metcalfe (flute)
Louis Moholo (South Africa, percussion)
Maggie Nicols (voice; composer)
Adrian Northover (soprano sax)
Sonia Paço-Rocchia (Canada, bassoon; composer)
Orphy Robinson (percussion; composer)
Rowland Sutherland (flutes)
Pat Thomas (keyboards; composer)
Dave Tucker (electric bass or guitar; composer)
Philipp Wachsmann (violin/viola; composer)
Jackie Walduck (vibes)
Sarah Washington (Germany, electronics)
Annie Whitehead (trombone)
Jason Yarde (saxophones; composer) 

Remembering absent friends: Harry Beckett (trumpet); Lol Coxhill (soprano saxophone); Tony Marsh (percussion), Paul Rutherford (trombone); Ray Warleight (saxophones, flute, etc.)