How to Dance on a Thin Line with Theresa Wong

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Cellist, vocalist and composer Theresa Wong explores the intersection of composition and improvisation, Dadaist vocal acrobatics and songwriting, the inquisitive and the absurd. In addition to collaborations with legendary Downtown guitarist Fred Frith and violinist-songwriter Carla Kihlstedt, Wong has released two solo albums – the latest, "Venice Is a Fish," was released in 2014.

Theresa Wong writes the following of her Mixtape:

In gathering an hour of music which has somehow recently or long since moved me, the realization surfaces that each of these composers and performers show me in a special way how to dance on a thin line; that is, how to make a string sing with plucking, bowing, hitting, glissing, harmonics, microtones, distorting, droning and retuning.

Although not all of these pieces are string-based, the sounds here have opened up ways of hearing for me as a cellist on a quest for ways of getting back to the 'nature of the tree', or in other words, the cello out of its historical and cultural context. Included in these works you will hear double bass, cello, electric and acoustic guitar, piano, the traditional Ainu tonkori of Hokkaido Japan, the ancient 7-string Chinese guqin and my co-conspirator Ellen Fullman's invented Long String Instrument. I feel a special kinship to these works as many of the composers also bridge the world of instrumental composition and song...(but that will be another playlist!)


Harry Partch - Castor & Pollux: A Dance for the Twin Rhythms of Gemini:
           I. Leda & the Swan (Insemination)
           II. Conception
           III. Incubation
José Maceda – Music For Two Pianos And Four Percussion Groups (Drone And Melody)
Hildegard Von Bingen – Instrumental Piece
Ellen Fullman & Monique Buzzarté – Fluctuation 1
Jon Hassell – Empire I
Giacinto Scelsi – String Trio I, Mvmt. I
Stefano Scodanibbio – Sei Studi (1981-93) For Double Bass: Studi 6: Farewell Geografia Amorosa
Peiyou Chang (performer, Guqin) – Parting at Yangguan Gate (Traditional Chinese)
Fred Frith – Mondays
Umeko Ando – ヘレカンホー
Henry Flynt – Telsat Tune
Abdul Wadud – Oasis

Other recent favorites of mine are these longer pieces, for checking out off the air...

Morton Feldman – Patterns In A Chromatic Field (1:40:12)
Stefano Scodanibbio – Oltracuidansa (58:14)
José Maceda – Ugnayan (51:00)
Phill Niblock – Feedcorn Ear (32:02)