A rare chance to hear these musicians talk about their work and shared histories, referencing the New York minimalist scene and Niblock’s legendary arts space Experimental Intermedia.
Phill Niblock is a New York-based minimalist composer, musician, filmmaker, and since 1985 director of Experimental Intermedia. His first musical compositions date from 1968, influenced by the New York music scene in the 1960s. His early works were all done with tape, overdubbing unprocessed recordings of precisely tuned long tones played on traditional instruments in four, eight, or sixteen tracks. Since the late 1990s his music has been created with computer technology, notably with Pro Tools, involving as many as forty tracks. His compositional process often begins with recordings of single tones played by a specific musician. The range of musicians he has collaborated with include Susan Stenger, Petr Kotik, Robert Poss, Lee Ranaldo, Thurston Moore, Ulrich Krieger, Carol Robinson and many others.
Susan Stenger was born in Buffalo, New York. After intensive classical flute studies in Prague and New York, she joined Petr Kotik's Brooklyn-based SEM Ensemble and devoted herself to performing music of twentieth century composers, including John Cage, Christian Wolff and Phill Niblock. She soon began making her own work for flute and electronics, as well as touring with Rhys Chatham's all-electric-guitar band. In 1986 she joined Robert Poss in founding seminal guitar group Band of Susans, who went on to release nine critically acclaimed CDs. After moving to London in 1996, Stenger formed performance group The Brood and all-bass-band Big Bottom. In 2006 she created a 96-day sound installation as part of Soundtrack For An Exhibition, presented at Musée d'Art Contemporain de Lyon.
Yoshi Wada is a sound artist and musician born in Kyoto, Japan. He studied sculpture at the Kyoto City University, and then moved to New York in the late 1960s. There he joined the Fluxus movement after meeting its founder George Maciunas, spent time studying composition and electronic music with La Monte Young and singing with the North Indian vocalist Pandit Pran Nath. From the 1970s onwards he constructed a series of large, handmade bagpipe instruments and adapted pipe organs; and composed work for portable bagpipes, pipe chanter and percussion. His work has been presented at The Kitchen, New York; Akademie der Kunste, Berlin; Sydney Biennial, Australia; Kraak Festival, Belgium, Emily Harvey Gallery, New York; Whitney Museum of Art, New York; PSI, New York; and Venice Biennial.
Curated by AV Festival 12.