Erik Ruin’s Ominous Cloud Ensemble:
Erik Ruin’s Ominous Cloud Ensemble is an ever-evolving, collectively-improvising large ensemble for projections and music, led by visual artist Erik Ruin, recently lauded by the New York Times for his “spell-binding cut-paper animations.” Erik manipulates intricate paper-cuts and painted films on overhead projectors to create abstract landscapes and fragmentary scenes that are nonetheless charged with meaning, merging with music that ranges from dark atmospherics to ecstatic peaks of dissonance. Members of the ensemble include a rotating cast of Philly’s finest musicians, who have collaborated with everyone from Anthony Braxton to the Sun Ra Arkestra to Bardo Pond.
For this performance Ominous Cloud will be:
Erik Ruin- projections
Laurie Amat- vocals
Carlos Santiago, Veronica MJ- violins
Julius Masri- electronics
Heru Shabaka-Ra- trumpet
DM Hotep- guitar
Quinn Collins- bass
Scott Verrastro- drums
Laurie Amat is an acclaimed vocalist, improvisational performer, experimental composer and teacher. Her approach to singing is informed by broad experience including pop, rock, traditional and inventive opera, spoken word, video, dance, theater and performance art.
She has performed pure-voice, site-specific resonant space pieces internationally in such traditional venues as concert halls, museums and galleries, cathedrals and alternative spaces including castles, bunkers, cisterns, rivers and concrete overpasses. She is also well known for her solo and collaborative performances throughout Europe, including projects with The Residents, Czech scholar/keyboardist Mirek Vodrazka and many others.
Her recording and performance techniques have expanded to use electronic devices as sound-altering instruments. The resulting electronic manipulation and looping of vocal sounds support the emotional element and enhances improvised solo and ensemble works.
Laurie will perform a solo set, then collaborate with Erik Ruin’s Ominous Cloud ensemble for their set.
Bismuth String Quartet:
One of Philadelphia’s hidden gems, Bismuth Quartet takes the string quartet into new territory through diverse repertoire and collaborations. Equally at home playing modern, classical, experimental, and improvised music, the Quartet presents a unique experience to its audiences. Having made its debut on the concert series A Listening Room, Bismuth revealed its colors playing works by Zapp 4, Franz Joseph Haydn, Caroline Shaw, Pauline Oliveros, and Takashi Yoshimatsu. Bismuth Quartet maintains active projects within the Philadelphia music scene at-large, having collaborated with the Space Whale Orchestra, indie-pop band Brother Martin, Arcana New Music Ensemble, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, NYC-based performer/improviser/composer Anaïs Maviel, and video artist/choreographer Nora Gibson aka CHROMA. The Quartet encourages the creation of new work and is in the midst of a commission in collaboration with composer Adam Berenson. Bismuth Quartet has recently released their premiere recording of Caroline Shaw’s Entr’acte. Bismuth String Quartet are Carlos Santiago, Gabe Miller, Molly Germer – rotating violins; Veronica Jurkiewicz – viola & Carolina Diazgranados – cello.