OOR Saloon presents:
Matana Roberts (NYC)
Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe (NYC)
Sofia Jernberg (SWE/ETH)
03.11.2019, Walcheturm Zureich
Matana Roberts (NYC)
«At my artistic core, I am firmly dedicated to creating a unique and very personal experiential body of sound work that speaks to, and reminds people of all walks of life to reach, stand up, give voice, regardless of difference, created from mere labels of intellectual classification. In my ideal world the idea of ‘difference’, is an illusion designed only for the purpose of modern economic division and elitist intellectual hierarchy. Through my life’s work, I stand creatively in defiance.»
Matana Roberts is an internationally renowned composer, band leader, saxophonist, sound experimentalist and mixed-media practitioner. Roberts works in many contexts and mediums, including improvisation, dance, poetry, and theater. She made two records as a core member of the Sticks And Stones quartet in the early 2000s and has gone on to release a diverse body of solo and ensemble work under her own name on Constellation and Central Control over the past decade. She is perhaps best known for her acclaimed Coin Coin project, a multi-chapter work of «panoramic sound quilting» that aims to expose the mystical roots and channel the intuitive spirit-raising traditions of American creative expression while maintaining a deep and substantive engagement with narrativity, history, community and political expression within improvisatory musical structures. Constellation began documenting the Coin Coin project in 2011 and has released the first three of a projected twelve album-length chapters to date.
The third chapter of Coin Coin, entitled river run thee and released on Constellation on February 2014, found Roberts constructing a sound art tapestry from field recordings, loop and effects pedals, and spoken word recitations, alongside her saxophone and singing voices. Coin Coin Chapter Three: river run thee could arguably be considered first and foremost a vocal work, and notwithstanding its experimental and esoteric structure, a deeply narrative work as well. Not unlike 2013’s Coin Coin Chapter Two: Mississippi Moonchile, the new chapter unfolds as an uninterrupted album-length flow, this time in what Roberts calls «a fever dream» of sonic material, woven in surrealist fashion.
A self-taught mixed media composer, the Chicago-raised and New York City-based Roberts earned two degrees in performance from a smattering of American institutions but received her main training from free arts programs in the American Public School System. She is a past member of the Black Rock Coalition (BRC) and the The Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). She has been a Van Lier Fellow, a Brecht Forum Fellow, a Copeland Fellow, a Jazz Makes Fellow, an ICASP fellow, a 2013 FCA fellow and a seven-time Alpert Award In The Arts nominee, receiving the award in 2014. She has been invited to teach, lecture, run workshops and/or take up artistic residencies in countless places under diverse conditions and with diverse communities over the past decade and is a past faculty member of the Banff Creative Music Workshop, School for Improvised Music, and Bard College MFA, where she was co-chair of the Music and Sound Department 2011-12. Roberts won the Doris Duke Impact Award in 2014.
Roberts has played with and alongside Rob Mazurek, Myra Melford, Vijay Iyer, Roscoe Mitchell, Greg Tate, Nicole Mitchell, Henry Grimes, Kyp Malone, Meshell Ndegeocello, Jayne Cortez, Seb Rochford, Fred Anderson, Latasha Diggs, George Lewis, Tyshawn Sorey, David Berhman, Pauline Oliveros, Reg E. Gaines, Daniel Givens, Savion Glover, Anthony Braxton, Kid Lucky, Liberty Ellman, Amina Claudine Meyers, Jeff Parker, Handsome Furs, Robert Mitchell, Quest Love, Julius Hemphill Sextet, Merce Cunningham, Moor Mother, Joe Maneri, Beans, Bill T Jones, Josh Abrams, Chad Taylor, Dave Douglas and John Herndon among many others. She has recorded as a guest musician with rock, pop and electronic groups as diverse as Godspeed You! Black Emperor, TV On The Radio, Savath & Savalas, Thee Silver Mt. Zion, and performance artists My Barbarian.
Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe (NYC)
Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe is an artist and composer that works with voice and modular synthesizer for sound in the realm of spontaneous music. Along with analog video synthesis works, he has brought forth an A/V proposal that has been a focus of live performance and installation/exhibition.
The marriage of synthesis and the voice has allowed for a heightened physicality in the way of ecstatic music, both in a live setting and recorded. The sensitivity of analogue modular synthesis echoes the organic nature of vocal expression which in this case is meant to put forth a trancelike state.
Lowe’s works on paper tend towards human relations to the natural/magical world and the repetition of motifs.
Through collaboration Robert has worked with Ben Russell, Ben Rivers, Sabrina Ratté, Rose Lazar, Nicolas Becker, Jóhann Jóhannsson, Tarek Atoui, Philippe Parreno, Evan Calder Williams, Ariel Kalma, Susie Ibarra, YoshimiO, Alexandra Wolkowicz, Biba Bell, ADULT., Hildur Guđnadóttir, and Rose Kallal, as well as many others.
Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.
Sofia Jernberg (SWE/ETH)
is a Swedish experimental singer, composer, improviser and performer, born in Ethiopia 1983. She grew up in Ethiopia, Vietnam and Sweden.
One of her deepest interests as a singer is to explore the «instrumental» possibilities of the voice. Her singing vocabulary includes sounds and techniques that often contradict a conventional singing style. She has dug deep into non verbal vocalizing, split tone singing, pitchless singing and distorted singing.
Music theater/Contemporary Opera:
She has performed several staged music theater pieces like Arnold Schönberg’s ”Pierrot Lunaire”, Salvatore Sciarrinos "Lohengrin”. Composers have written roles especially with her in mind like in Emily Hall’s ”Folie à Deux and Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s ”UR:”.
Currently she is working with a new contemporary chamber opera work, premiering Autumn 2019 at Royal Opera House in Copenhagen, together with Cia Rinne, Henrik Strindberg and Louise Beck. Sofia will both compose and perform in this opera.
She has performed together with visual artist Camille Norment and was part of her piece ”Rapture” (Venice Biennale 2015) and ”Lull” (Festspillene i Bergen 2016).
She is featured as a singer in an 80 minute cinematic work, ”Union of the North”, by Matthew Barney, Erna Ómarsdóttir and Valdimar Jóhannsson.
She is central, as the only singer/performer/human on screen, in an audiovisual work by visual artist Kristina Norman and composer Märt - Matis Lill exhibited in Tallin art museum in feb 2018.
As a composer she has been commissioned by Barents composer orchestra, Swedish Radio P2, Stockholm Jazz Festival, Trondheim jazz orchestra, vocal ensemble Oslo 14, Klang - Copenhagen Avantgarde Music Festival, BANFF - Center for arts and creativity, The Gothenburg Combo and various chamber ensembles.
As a teacher in singing and composition she has been part of faculty at BANFF - Center for arts and creativity contemporary music summer curse 2017. She has given lectures/workshops at several Universities around Europe.
Selection of active bands:
Electric Daisy (Kim Myhr, David Stackenäs, Christian Wallumrød, Jernberg), Solo (voice solo, Jernberg), Fire! Orchestra, The End (Kjetil Møster, Mats Gustafsson, Anders Hana, Greg Saunier, Jernberg), Trondheim Jazz Orchester Sofia Jernberg and Olav Mjelva, Trondheim Jazz Orchestra Espen Reinertsen, Trondheim Jazz Orchestra Ole Morten Vågan, Mette Rasmussen/Sofia Jernberg duo, Lene Grenager/Sofia Jernberg duo, Alexander Hawkins/Sofia Jernberg duo, Peter Evans/Sofia Jernberg duo, PAAVO, The New Songs
Unfortunately YATTA had to cancel their europe-tour because of health issues. We wish them all the best and hope to see and hear them in zürich very soon in the future!