Other Minds Festivals ➔ Other Minds Festival: OM 16: Panel Discussion & Concert 2, 3 of 5

Digital Audio

Event Type
Other Minds
Program Series
Other Minds Festival
Program Length
125 min
3 of 5
| broadcast
| 2011-03-04 | created
The second concert of the 16th Other Minds Festival of New Music (OM 16), held on March 4, 2011, began as usual, with an informative and entertaining panel discussion moderated by Charles Amirkhanian. Most of the concert’s featured composers and performers gathered on stage, including David A. Jaffe, Agata Zubel, I Wayan Balawan, and Han Bennink, as well as sound sculptor Trimpin. Jaffe describes how, with the assistance of Trimpin, he has utilized a three dimensional computer mouse as a controller for a variety of instruments created by Henry Brant, some of which were suspended from the ceiling. Zubel provides a brief introduction to her first experiment with pure, non-textual, vocalizing, as well as describing some of her other compositions for orchestra. Balawan, then talks about how he uses MIDI controllers and other forms of technology to enable him to get more sounds out of his guitar than would otherwise be possible from just four strings and eight fingers. And finally Bennink, offers a humorous introduction to his musical family’s legacy, as well as a brief history of the Instant Composers Pool in the Netherlands. However, other than mentioning his general willingness to play with anyone, he offers little in the way of an explanation for this evenings performance with Fred Frith, stating that “music is music, and language is language.”

The Space Between Us

An unproven theory says that all people on Earth are connected by six degrees of separation. Of equal, if not greater interest is the space between those connections. This piece explores what can be communicated and what must remain unsaid as eight isolated string players embedded in the audience, and one percussionist alone on stage, reach out to one another. While the violinists, violists and cellists move air through intimate coupling of bows, strings and bodies, the percussionist silently induces electromagnetic waves that elicit reaction in remote robotic xylophones, bells, pianos and chimes. The piece is a memorial tribute to spatial music pioneer Henry Brant, who referred to space as the Fourth Dimension of Music, after pitch, time and timbre. -David A. Jaffe

Music by I Wayan Balawan

Balawan’s guitar playing, characterized by rapid-fire attack and technology enhancement (he employs a guitar synthesizer and a rack of effects) and Balinese/Indonesian aesthetic—sets him apart from other Balinese popular musicians. Fast guitar playing and moving lines characterize his hybrid pieces...His music and approach to hybridity have changed over the years. In the beginning (1997), he relied mostly on quoting gamelan pieces in his compositions; later he developed, along with the gamelan musicians, original melodies, interlocking parts, and techniques...Balawan’s hybrid music reflects his life. He appropriated the global forms of jazz and metal into the music of his first music experience, gamelan, and combined these to formulate his sense of aesthetics, which features speed and intensity: items shared by all three synthesized forms...Music hybridity has been ongoing in Bali and reflected increasing levels of globalization since the early 20th century. Balawan’s life and music parallel the 21st Century period of rapidly increasing transnationalism and globalization. To some extent, he is just another social actor in the larger arc of Balinese hybridization, but one with his own agency and vision to fuse disparate styles into a contemporary synthesis. – from "Music Hybridity in Bali: The Agency & Performance Style of Guitarist I Wayan Balawan" by Professor David Harnish, Bowling Green State University


The composition makes use of a wide range of sonoristic possibilities which are latent in speech sounds, their combinations and groups. An appropriate articulation of these speech sounds will reveal a wealth of voice possibilities, as well as the qualities that can be produced by means of voice emission, without singing any specific words or texts. The narration unfolds in this piece only through diversification of the expressive qualities of speech sounds themselves from whisper to crying, from clear articulation to mumbling. - Agata Zubel

Music by Han Bennink

Han Bennink and Fred Frith engage in an energetic improvisation in which the irrepressible Dutch percussionist treats every available object and surface as an instrument. Whether he wandering into the concert hall to strike the seats and walls, or engaging in experiments with his sole snare drum and a piece of elastic to find out just how close he can get to having it all tip over, the two musician never fail to find a connection and keep the music rolling along.

Notes: “The Space Between Us” was commissioned by Other Minds with support from the James Irvine Foundation, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.

Agata Zubel is presented in partnership with the Polish Cultural Institute New York; Han Bennink is presented with the support of the Consulate General of the Netherlands.
Musical Selections
[first live performance], for guitar, gamelan, bass, and drums (6:10) / I Wayan Balawan -- [second live performance], for guitars, gamelan, bass, and drums (6:46) / I Wayan Balawan -- [a live demonstration], for voice, guitar, and electronics (1:44) / I Wayan Balawan -- See You Very Soon, for guitar, gamelan, bass, and drums (9:00) / I Wayan Balawan
I Wayan Balawan, guitars
I Nyoman Suwida, gamelan
I Nyoman Suarsana, gamelan
Dylan, Johnson, bass
Scott Amendola, drums
Guitar with jazz ensemble