Marko Ciciliani's primary performance medium is the mixing board 'sans instruments', using only feedback from the machine itself. The abstruse practice of playing a no-input mixer has, in recent years, become something of a staple of the improv scene. But unlike that minimalist layerering that the no-input mixer became known for, Ciciliani gives very textured performances, allowing the cross-interference of feedback from the circuits grow into complex patterns. He juggles conflicting waves of sound; the knob twiddling is often projected onto a screen, allowing the audience to see Ciciliani’s delicate manipulations close-up. He’s performed on the no-input mixer with Fred Frith, Gordon Mumma, Roberto Fabbriciani, Axel Dörner and Sachiko M, amongst others. In March 2008 the label Evil Rabbit Records (www.evilrabbitrecords.eu) will release Ciciliani's solo no-input mixer CD 81 matters in elemental order which is for the first time available at this concert. The CD consists of 81 tracks -- of 4 up to 90 seconds in length -- that should be played back in shuffle mode. Each time the CD is played back, the composition's elements are therefore put in a new, unique order. The tracks are poetic translations of the molecular characteristics of chemical elements, adjusted for the untamed circuits of the mixing board. Depending on the result of the CD player's shuffle mode, the chemical mix might very well turn out to be explosive!
Robert van Heumen works with electronic, experimental, improvised and composed music, music-theater and sound art. Recent works include 5.1 surround compositions 12 Bullets and Fury (after anger) and the audio-visual sound art piece Solitude (with multi-media artist Arnoud Noordegraaf) based on a book by Paul Auster. As a musician he uses STEIM's live sampling software LiSa and real-time audio-synthesis and algorithmic composition software SuperCollider. He is active as a member of the electronic audio-visual trio SKIF++ (with Jeff Carey & Bas van Koolwijk), Shackle (working with Anne LaBerge on restriction), electro-acoustic sextet OfficeR (with Koen Nutters cs.), founding member of the N Collective, and has shared the stage with Tom Tlalim, dj sniff (Takuro Mizuta Lippit), Michel Waisvisz, Richard Barrett, Oguz Buyukberber, Luc Houtkamp, Guy Harries, Audrey Chen and Nate Wooley. His soundworld is a mixture of digital crackles, environmental sounds, voices, sounds from kitchen appliances, half of the time smashed beyond repair. Next to all of this he is Managing Director of the STEIM foundation in Amsterdam, curator of the Local Stop concert series and member of STEIM's Artistic Committee. Creative Sources Recordings (creativesourcesrec.com) released his CD Fury in January 2008.
Ivo Bol is a composer and live performer who has written several solo works and many compositions for film, dance and theatre, integrating live sampling and synthesis with composed music. He has performed throughout Europe, China, the United States and Venezuela. Many contemporary ensembles and chamber music groups have so called 'tape pieces' on their repertoire, in which the score is accompanied by a recording with sounds that are part of the composition. Taking this idea a step further, Ivo Bol works with a dynamic and intuïtive live instrument consisting of software programs that are controlled by computer game controllers. With this setup, a combination of LiSa, JunXion and Max, it is possible to capture and manipulate sounds from other musicians in a live performance.
Remco Jak - soprano saxophone
Olivier Sliepen - alto saxophone
Bas Apswoude - tenor saxophone
Ties Mellema - baritone saxophone
The repertoire of the Amstel Quartet is original, its performances personal. From the mystery of Bach’s Second Cello Suite in D to Michael Nyman’s theme for the film The Piano, the four saxophones unleash a new energy with each arrangement. The Amstel Quartet has the technical confidence to tackle the most difficult piece from Iannis Xenakis and the versatility to collaborate with artists from other disciplines such as dance, musical theatre, mime and cinema.
This versatility and talent have earned the Amstel Quartet many prizes at competitions, the latest accolade coming in the form of the 2006 Concert Artists Guild Management and Audience Awards at Carnegie Hall in New York City. In 2005 the Amstel Quartet won the International Chamber Music Competition in Illzach, France and placed second for the Gaudeamus Interpreter’s Prize. In 2004 they won the Chamber Music in Yellow Springs Competition in the United States. That same year brought them the Uitmarkt Audience Award and the Kersjes van de Groenekan Awards in the Netherlands. Before, the Amstel Quartet won the Dutch Almere Prize for Chamber Music and was prizewinner at the Gustav Bumcke Competition for saxophone ensembles in Dortmund, Germany.
The Amstel Quartet and composer / performer Ivo Bol present a program with saxophones and live sampling, early Dutch Baroque music, a solo work for computer and a homage to the Venezuelan landscape. This unique combination of chamber music, electronic music and improvisation, will be premiered at the Detroit Institute of Arts in Detroit on April 4 2008. This STEIM concert will be a try-out.
Contamination (composition for an unspecified number of instruments and LiSa, Ivo Bol, 12 min)
This 'dynamic tape piece' is written for an undefined number of instrumentalists and LiSa. It can be performed by any kind of instrument. The sounds of the instruments are recorded live and immediately played back and manipulated. The performers have to improvise with and react upon the live sampled sound as wel as pre-recorded material. A first version of this work was performed by Ivo Bol and Ties Mellema in Caracas, Venezuela in 2005.
Rhythmic Fantasy (composition for Saxophone Quartet and LiSa, Ivo Bol, 8 min)
The Amstel Quartet has commissioned Ivo Bol to write a composition for saxophone and live sampling inspired by Chromatic Fantasy from the Dutch composer Jan Sweelinck. The canon form of the Sweelinck's Fantasy is maintained but in this piece the saxophones have to echo rhythmic patterns that are created by LiSa, creating layers and thick clouds of sound particles.
Chromatic Fantasy (Jan Pieterszoon Sweelick (1562-1621), 7:33 min, arr: Bas Apswoude)
A Dutch organist, harpsichordist, composer and teacher, Sweelinck spent most of his life in Amsterdam. In 1580 he became the organist of the Oude Kerk (Old Church) succeeding his father Pieter. Although he never ventured much out of Holland, Sweelinck's influence spread through the Northern German organ schools via his students, who include Scheidt, Scheidemann, Praetorius, and Hasse. Sweelinck was the first to use independent pedal parts, including fugue subjects in the pedal line. He took many important forms from around Europe, including the Italian ricercar and the English virginal style, expanding and developing them in ways unknown before. In fact, many of his pieces contain the embryo of the fugue form, later perfected by J.S. Bach. His compositions bridge the gap from the Renaissance to the Baroque periods. Sweelinck might be considered the last composer of the renaissance fantasies. Like other dutch composers of his time, he was strongly inspired by English music.
Big Bang (Solo work for LiSa, Max & Micro Modular, Ivo Bol, 5 min)
This piece is a short adapted version of The Gasometer Universe, a piece inspired by the Big Bang Theory. The piece starts with a 'Sonic Big Bang', a conglomerate of all the sounds that are used later in the piece. Throughout the piece there is a development from extreme density to a very minimal presence, and from a very high volume to a very low volume. It is performed using midi controllers, game controllers, sampling programs and various music software programs. The Gasometer Universe is the title of his winning composition for the MONO competition organised by the German Association for Electroacoustic Music, performed in September 2007 at the Gasometer in Oberhausen. The piece was written especially for the Gasometer, a 117 meters high Gas-factory from the 1920s in Oberhausen, in the heart of the Ruhr area in Germany.
Canto Lano (Eduardo Marturet, composition for saxophone and delay, 12 min)
The Local Stop concert series is curated by Robert van Heumen.