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  • Sonic Sunsets presents The Great Blue Heron + Aaron Pond
    4:30 PM-6:30 PM
    12/07/2019

    3401 Reservoir Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19121, USA

    3401 Reservoir Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19121, USA

    Come out to gorgeous, sublime, avian paradise that is The Discovery Center as The Great Blue Heron joins us for the first Sonic Sunset of the winter!
    Suggested Donation- $5-10, No soul turned away for lack of funds,
    About Sonic Sunsets
    Sonic Sunsets are a dream where everything you love comes together. It’s some of the finest musicians in Philadelphia, playing for some of the most passionate and knowledgeable lovers of sound in Philadelphia. It’s an ode to Strawberry Mansion. It’s an ode to the Reservoir, to a new beaten path on the very ground that John Coltrane walked. Sonic Sunsets exist with the intent of honoring African American history, music, and ecological justice. Restoring our environment, humanity, and our common spaces.

    Every concert comes with freshness: fresh music, fresh fruit, fresh sourdough bread to be consumed in the cozy confines of our great room (with a generous slap of garlic butter). These musicians come from all over Philly, west, south, north, inspired by the past, inspired by the birds, inspired by a future in which each and every one of us is filled with bliss. The birds, our constant accompaniment, from songs, to chirps, to squawks, also come from all around, year-round residents and snow birds from Canada and Miami, all ancestors of a once colossal Pangea.

    About the Performers
    “The Great Blue Heron” is a newly formed collective of some of Philadelphia’s very best Avant-Garde and Free Jazz musicians performing improvised compositions through deep listening and creative reaction. Led by Bass Clarinetist Mike Watson.
    As with the heron itself, the music strives for patience, timing, and grace. Yet searches for detail and knows when to fly away
    Aaron Pond is your host and opener for the evening, performing a solo Improvisation on anything from Voice, Kalimba, JHorn, or Tea Kettle. He likes to make melodies and lyrics up on the spot. He has no clue what he will do until its time to do it. His goal is simple, be as beautiful as a bird.
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  • João Castro Pinto, Bhob Rainey & Apologist
    8:00 PM
    12/10/2019

    319 NORTH 11TH STREET 3RD FLOOR PHILADELPHIA, PA 19107

    319 NORTH 11TH STREET 3RD FLOOR PHILADELPHIA, PA 19107

    João Castro Pinto:
    João Castro Pinto started his activity as a composer / performer of experimental music, and as a sound and intermedia artist, in the second half of the 1990s. His production comprehends the domains of soundscape composition, intermedia, live electronics improvisation (solo and with instrumentalists), electroacoustic / acousmatic music and radio art. Castro Pinto has presented his work extensively in Europe, America and Asia.

    João Castro Pinto’s academic path is reflected in his work, to the extent that it suggests his artistic concerns and aesthetic interests. He graduated in Philosophy, from the F.C.S.H. at the New University of Lisbon, being currently focused on the completion of his PhD studies in science and technology of the arts (Computer Music soundscape composition) at the Catholic University of Portugal – C.I.T.A.R. (Research Center for Science and Technology of the Arts), where he is a researcher.

    João Castro Pinto has presented his work in festivals, events and venues as: INA-GRM Multiphonies / Banc D’Essai (France), ICMC – International Computer Music Conference (USA), Experimental Intermedia Foundation (USA), Poetronica (Moscow), ISCM – World Music Days Festival (Estonia), Soundkitchen (England), Visiones Sonoras (Mexico), MUSLAB – International Exhibition of Electroacoustic Music (Argentina), Audio Art Festival (Poland), Wien Modern (Austria), ORF (Austrian Broadcasting: Kunstradio Radiokunst), Sammlung Essl Museum (Austria), Alte Schmiede Kunstverein Wien (Austria), Interpenetration Festival (Austria), PNEM Sound Art Festival (Holland), SICMF – Seoul International Computer Music Festival (South Korea), Dotolimpic – Festival for Improvised and Experimental Music (South Korea), Música Viva (Portugal), Aveiro Síntese (Portugal), DME – Festival Dias de Música Electroacústica (Portugal), C.A.M. – Gulbenkian (Portugal), Centro Cultural de Belém (Portugal), Casa da Música (Portugal), Serralves em Festa (Portugal), National Pantheon (Portugal), etc.

    He collaborated with: Hanna Hartman (SE), Tom Hamilton (EUA), Karlheinz Essl (AT), Koji Asano (JP), Bernhard Loibner (AT), Clemens Hausch (AT), Vienna Improvisers Orchestra (AT), Michael Fischer (AT), Philippe Lamy (FR), Jorge Sánchez-Chiong (VE), Pavel Zhagun (RU), Alexei Borisov (RU), Gilles Aubry (CH), Thollem Mcdonas (EUA), Nathan Fuhr (EUA), John Grzinich (EE), Red Trio (PT), Blaise Siwula (USA), among many others artists.

    João Castro Pinto’s music is available in the following labels: Miso Records (Portugal), Unfathomless (Belgium), OtO (Japan), Triple Bath (Greece), Sirr-ecords (Portugal), Creative Sources Recordings (Portugal), Grain Of Sound (Portugal), Variz (Portugal) and Useless Poorductions (Portugal).

    João Castro Pinto is a composer published and officially endorsed by MISO MUSIC PORTUGAL’s – MIC.PT – Portuguese Music Research & Information Centre. His music is also frequently presented in events organized by CIME – International Confederation of Electroacoustic Music and by ISCM – International Society for Contemporary Music.

    Bhob Rainey:
    Bhob Rainey is an award-winning composer / performer, saxophonist, and sound designer. In the 1990s and early 2000s, he was instrumental in defining the “lowercase” or “EAI” movement in non-idiomatic improvisation, exemplified by his work with trumpeter Greg Kelley in Nmperign. In 2000 he founded The BSC, an improvising large ensemble, in which he developed techniques for an improvisational discipline that were eventually outlined in his 2011 publication, Manual. He has performed globally and collaborated with numerous improvisers of both the (then) current and previous generations, including Axel Dörner, Andrea Neumann, Günter Müller, Michel Doneda, Lê Quan Ninh, and many others.

    Since the mid-2000s, Rainey has been creating electroacoustic and algorithmic works, often in cross-disciplinary collaborations. He has been a regular collaborator with theater company New Paradise Laboratories, composing the music and sound design for The Adults (2014) and O Monsters (2016). Recently, he composed, designed, installed, and performed the music in JungWoong Kim’s site specific dance piece, SaltSoul (2016).
    Rainey was awarded the Pew Fellowship in the Arts in 2013, and in 2014 he received a Subito grant from the American Composers Forum to complete a multimedia project with filmmaker Catherine Pancake. Among other things, he is currently working on a third project with New Paradise Laboratories and is creating a series of generative, sometimes interactive, music apps. To date, Rainey has over 30 releases as a leader or co-leader.
    Apologist:
    Apologist is Rose Rae, a native Philadelphian making music with synthesizers and field recordings. “Apologist exists as a strong presence, but with a whole different demeanor. The strength exists like a knot in your throat, wrenching your insides and keeping you from speaking. It’s more like an ugly-crying sorry than it is a hole punched in drywall. There is an odd comfort in bawling ones eyes out to the point of feeling physical pain that is so much stronger than the stupidity of physical anger and damage. It’s beautiful and it’s hurt, like walking out on to your steps barefoot to see a first snow. You know it’s cold, but you are willing to face the consequences.”- David Coccagna
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  • Aaron Novik’s No Signal & Strange Parts
    8:00 PM
    12/12/2019

    1638 East Berks Street, Philadelphia, PA 19125

    1638 East Berks Street, Philadelphia, PA 19125

    Aaron Novik:
    Aaron Novik is a recent New York transplant that lived and performed in the bay area (San Francisco, Oakland etc.) for 17 years.
    There he lead the bands Gubbish, Kipple, Floating World, Love Triangle Elementary School, Simulacra, Thorny Brocky and made records under his own name as well, including the album “Secrets of Secrets” which was released on Tzadik records in 2012.
    Aaron also performed with the bass clarinet quartet Edmund Welles, the Nathan Clevenger Group, Telepathy, Colin Stetson’s Transmission, Graham Connah and most notably in Fred Frith’s Gravity band, which has played festivals around the world.
    He currently lives in Woodside, Queens and leads several ensembles including No Signal, O+O+, and Dante Counterstamp. He also just published his first comic book titled Frowny Frown.
    Aaron is performing to celebrate the release of No Signal, a work inspired by the 80’s downtown noise rock and experimental jazz scenes. The instrumentation is two clarinets a half step apart (b flat and A clarinet) and two guitars tuned a half step apart. Performing are:
    Aaron Novik- A clarinet
    Jeremiah Cymerman– B flat clarinet
    Nick Millevoi – guitar
    Matt Hollenberg– guitar
    Strange Parts:
    Upon meeting in Philadelphia in 2007, Attia Taylor and Corey Duncan vowed to make music together. It was not until years later when Duncan had moved home to Seattle and Taylor had taken a job in New York that the pair began working on material via email. Over three years of bicoastal collaboration Strange Parts was born. The project brings together the minimal pop sounds of Taylor’s solo work and the classical infused art pop of Duncan’s project Oh! Pears. This unlikely union combines to create a melodic art pop sound, rich with body moving grooves and toe tapping hooks, drawing inspiration from the likes of Serge Gainsbourg, Ebo Taylor, Billie Holiday, Broadcast, and writer Hermann Hesse.
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  • Sonic Sunsets Presents Madam Data + IMC Ensemble & Argyle Torah
    4:30 PM-6:30 PM
    12/14/2019

    3401 Reservoir Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19121, USA

    3401 Reservoir Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19121, USA

    Come out to gorgeous, sublime, avian paradise that is The Discovery Center as Madam Data joins us for the 2nd Sonic Sunset of the winter! Don’t worry we’ll keep you nice and warm.
    Suggested Donation- $5-10, No soul turned away for lack of funds,
    About Sonic Sunsets
    Sonic Sunsets are a dream where everything you love comes together. It’s some of the finest musicians in Philadelphia, playing for some of the most passionate and knowledgeable lovers of sound in Philadelphia. It’s an ode to Strawberry Mansion. It’s an ode to the Reservoir, to a new beaten path on the very ground that John Coltrane walked. Sonic Sunsets exist with the intent of honoring African American history, music, and ecological justice. Restoring our environment, humanity, and our common spaces.

    Every concert comes with freshness: fresh music, fresh fruit, fresh sourdough bread to be consumed in the cozy confines of our great room (with a generous slap of garlic butter). These musicians come from all over Philly, west, south, north, inspired by the past, inspired by the birds, inspired by a future in which each and every one of us is filled with bliss. The birds, our constant accompaniment, from songs, to chirps, to squawks, also come from all around, year-round residents and snow birds from Canada and Miami, all ancestors of a once colossal Pangea.

    About the Performers
    For this performance, madam data will be leading the Imaginary Continent Ensemble (Michael Forbes – Bb Clarinet, Kyle Press – Saxophone, Watsun – Bass Clarinet) performing their compositions List A and Imaginary Continents 25-29.
    Bio: Ada Adhiyatma [madam data] is a musician who explores machine interfaces and the embodied idea of distance. Working with handmade computer programs, field recordings and old samplers, they fantasize about sound as a way to echolocate spaces defined by separations, the trauma of dislocation, the impossibility of empathy.
    Argyle Torah- Improvisations of Man and Machine for Voice and Modular Synthesizer.
    Bio:
    Thomas Patteson + Aaron Pond are buds spiraling out from soil in delicate procedures. The difference- small. Both befriend the spirit of the sun. Thomas channels UV rays through circuits into pure aurality. Aaron makes petals ruminate.
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  • Estamos Trio (Thollem/Escobar/Tamez) & Keir Neuringer
    8:00 PM
    12/20/2019

    319 NORTH 11TH STREET 3RD FLOOR PHILADELPHIA, PA 19107

    319 NORTH 11TH STREET 3RD FLOOR PHILADELPHIA, PA 19107

    Estamos Trio:
    Estamos Trio is an exploratory music ensemble formed through the cross-border Estamos Project founded by Thollem in 2010.
    Experimental vocalist Carmina Escobar is a performer, improviser, sound and intermedia artist from Mexico City. Her work focuses primarily on sound, the voice, the body, and their interrelations to physical, social, memory and present spaces.
    Mexican creative drummer/composer and independent artist Milo Tamez. Specialized in solo extended-prepared drum set percussion, Tamez had produced compositions exploring into a new percussive poetics, cinematic experiences and tour de force drumming manifestos; he also had collaborated with composers premiering new music works for solo drum set percussion.
    Thollem is a pianist, keyboardist, composer, improviser, singer-songwriter, activist, author and teacher. He’s spent his life skirting and erasing the edges of boundaries musically, culturally, geographically. His work is ever changing, evolving and responding to the times and his experiences, both as a soloist and in collaboration with hundreds of artists across idioms and disciplines.
    Keir Neuringer:
    Keir Neuringer is a Philadelphia-based saxophonist, composer, and writer whose work is underpinned by interdisciplinary approaches and socio-political contextualizations. He is best known for a personal and intensely physical saxophone technique, revealed through long form solo improvisations, as well as collaborations with a multitude of world-renowned and underground practitioners in jazz, avant-garde, noise, classical, theater, and dance disciplines. He has traveled extensively to present his work, appeared on numerous festival stages, and given workshops throughout Europe and North America. In addition to the saxophone, he plays analogue electronics and Farfisa organ, narrates text (most notably with Dutch new music group Ensemble Klang), and composes largely outside of conventional new music scenes. He trained as a composer and saxophonist in the US, spent two years on a Fulbright research grant in Krakow, and then moved to The Hague, where he lived for eight years, curating performative audiovisual art and earning a masters degree from the experimental ArtScience Institute. Originally from New York State, he settled in Philadelphia in 2012, where he lives with his family and advocates against prisons as a member of the Books Through Bars Collective.
    Current collaborative projects include liberation jazz ensemble Irreversible Entanglements, improvisation trio Dromedaries, the Simone Weissenfels Trio (based in Germany), and duos with bassist Rafal Mazur, from Krakow, and turntablist Matt Wright, from Canterbury.
    “…with Neuringer’s music…mortal purpose is a given.”
    (Bill Meyer, September 2014 issue of Wire Magazine)
  • Sarah Hennies: Contralto
    8:00 PM
    12/20/2019

    4014 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States

    4014 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States

    Sarah Hennies: Contralto
    plus Flourish with Ashely Tini
    Ithaca composer and percussionist Sarah Hennies presents a cinematic version of her stunning 2017 video work Contralto, a bracing yet tender meditation on gender dysphoria viewed through the lens of transgender women finding a comfortable new speaking voice. Based on her experience in Ithaca College’s Voice and Communication Modification Program for People in the Transgender Community, the composer gathered seven diverse transgender women to perform vocal exercises designed to aid in so-called, “voice feminization.” Contralto is an intimate glimpse into the participants articulating stock phrases, singing notes, and sharing personal details to present a powerful example of the harrowing difficulties involved in the process. While the video stands on its own as an experimental documentary, it’s greatly enhanced by an inextricably woven score by Hennies that underlines the sense of futility embedded in quotidian, wok-like exercises practiced by the video subjects, which by default become symbolic acts of resistance in the transgender community.
    To open the evening Hennies and Philadelphia percussionist Ashley Tini—who is among the musicians on the cinematic version of Contralto—will perform the composer’s Flourish (2013), for two vibraphonists positioned on opposite sides of the same instrument. The work presents different modes of stasis, from relentlessly pulsing mallet strikes to billowing clouds of overtones and spooky interference patterns.
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