Lab 26: Christopher Williams – Becoming a resource: on some recent projects with and for improvisers

Wednesday 13 November 2019, 12-4, CM105

Talk 12-2pm

In the first phase of the afternoon, Berlin-based composer, contrabassist, curator, and researcher Christopher A. Williams (http://www.christopherisnow.com) will offer a brief theoretical background and practical musings on two recent collaborative compositions with and for improvising musicians:

Since finishing his 2016 PhD dissertation on notation for improvisers, Tactile Paths (http://www.tactilepaths.net), Christopher has become increasingly interested in what landscape architect Lawrence Halprin and dancer/choreographer Anna Halprin call “resources” – what’s already there in the environment as a creative process takes root. When working with improvisers, resources include not only sounds, instruments, forms, concepts, notations, and so on, but also particular individuals and ensembles with unique soundworlds, compositional sensibilities, and histories. Collaboration changes these resources continually and produces new ones. Composing then becomes a long-term improvisation in which the composer is not only interacting with his/her chosen resources, but actually becomes a resource him/herself in the creative environment.

Workshop 2-4pm

In the second phase, Christopher will offer a workshop around a perpetual work in progress entitled A Musik. Performers put together different families of paper to create mosaic-like scores; these catalyze relations within an ensemble so that it might play its own music (differently).

Participants who play instruments should bring them. Everyone should bring a portable, shareable “resource”, sounding or otherwise: a material, score (fragment), little instrument, concept, text, or anything else with which they can participate.

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