On-Demand Audio: New Music for Percussion, Strings and Electronics at 2014 Ferus Festival

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On May 17, VisionIntoArt's Ferus Festival presented new works by composer and VIA co-founder Paola Prestini, composer John King, cellist Jeffrey Ziegler and recent Rome Prize-recipient Andy Akiho at The Stone. The composers were joined by vocalist Helga Davis (Einstein on the Beach), Mivos Quartet and percussionist Ian Rosenbaum for an evening of music that bridged composition, improvisation and electronics.

Paola Prestini and Jeffrey Zeigler opened the set with a new cello-and-electronics arrangement of Body Maps, a collaborative work set to appear on Zeigler’s upcoming album "Listen Quiet." The world premiere of Prestini's G-Force, an alternately pensive and playful new work performed by Mivos Quartet and Ian Rosenbaum, touched on elements of folk and gamelan music.

Listen, Quiet explores the power of water; as Prestini writes on her site, "it nurtures, heals, separates." Cello, percussion and sparse vocals emulate trickling water, slowly gathering into swirling pools before a backdrop of prerecorded conversation. On the world premiere of John King's Kosmos, whispered solo cello lines are electronically transformed using live chance-determined electronic processing to create an ethereal, ever-changing sound. The concert ended with a new arrangement of Andy Akiho's 21 for steel pan, cello and vocalist Helga Davis. 

VisionIntoArt (VIA), the multimedia company co-founded at the Juilliard School in 1999 by composer Paola Prestini has commissioned works from composers, choreographers, poets, filmmakers and other artists, with particular emphasis on cross-disciplinary collaborative projects.

Complete Program:

Paola Prestini - Body Maps

Paola Prestini - G-Force

John King - Kosmos Solo for Cello

Paola Prestini - Listen, Quiet

Andy Akiho – 21

This concert was recorded and mixed by Jay Eigenmann.