Entries by Jeffrey Strausser

Tiokasin Ghosthorse

Tiokasin Ghosthorse — a member of the Cheyenne River Lakota Nation of South Dakota — is an international speaker on Peace, Indigenous, and Mother Earth perspectives. A survivor of the “Reign of Terror” from 1972 to 1976 on the Pine Ridge, Cheyenne River and Rosebud Lakota Reservations in South Dakota and the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs Boarding and Church Missionary School systems designed to “kill the Indian and save the man,” Tiokasin has a long history of Indigenous activism and advocacy. He is a guest faculty member at Yale University’s School of Divinity, Ecology and Forestry, focusing on the cosmology, diversity, and perspectives on the relational/egalitarian vs. rational/hierarchal thinking processes of Western society. Tiokasin is the Founder, Host, and Executive Producer of the twenty-four-year-old “First Voices Radio” (formerly “First Voices Indigenous Radio”), a one-hour live program now syndicated to seventy radio stations in the U.S. and Canada.

Fufan Zhang

Fufan Zhang is a set designer and visual artist from China.

Influenced by her family of professional Peking Opera singers, Fufan is fascinated by theater, opera, dance, and film.  During her artistic edification, Fufan has found set design to be a fluid dialog between performance and life.  Fufan has embraced this insight, which has allowed her to fuse life experiences with the materials on stage in order to share a strong emotional experience with the audience.

Fufan’s set design credits include:  Seven Guitars  (Yale Repertory Theater); The Oresteia,  A Midsummer Night’s Dream,  Amy and the Orphans  (Yale School of Drama);  Pheadra’s Love,  Salt Pepper Ketchup  (Yale Cabaret);  Ya Shan  (Beijing Nine Theater).

Prior to attending Yale University, Fufan received a BFA in stage, film, and television design from The Central Academy of Drama in Beijing, China.  Fufan’s other credits included Production Design for Yamakawa, a series of photographs; Art Director for The Terrorists (Best Foreign Short Film Award – Seoul International Youth Film Festival, 2012) and Show Time  (Best Film, 1st Place – 48 Hour Film Project, Beijing, China, 2014).

Claire Tancons

Trained as a curator and art historian at École du Louvre in Paris, Université de Montréal, the Courtauld Institute in London and the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program in New York, Claire Tancons practices curating as an expanded field and has experimented with the political aesthetics of walking, marching, second lining, masquerading and parading in large-scale public performances for close to a decade. As a curator of performance, Tancons organized the first New York solo exhibitions of artists Robin Rhode at Artists Space (2004) and Ralph Lemon at the Kitchen (2007) as well as one of the first showcases of Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky’s Re-Birth of a Nation project at Paula Cooper Gallery. As the artistic director of large-scale public performances since 2008, Tancons has featured works by artists including Los Carpinteros, Ebony G. Patterson, Marlon Griffith, Marinella Senatore, Nicoline Van Harskamp, and Mohamed Bourouissa as well as collaborated with architect Gia Wolff and musicians Christophe Chassol and Arto Lindsay. She has curated for established and emerging international biennials including Prospect New Orleans (2008); the Gwangju Biennale (2008); the Cape Town Biennial (2009); Biennale Bénin (2012) and the Göteborg Biennial (2013). Since 2012, she has initiated a series of collaborations tackling different aspects of public ceremonial culture, civic rituals, carnival and processional performance including Far Festa: Nuove Feste Veneziane (with curatorial collective CAKE AWAY; IUAV University and Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa, summer 2013), Public Practice (with Delaney Martin; New Orleans Airlift, Fall 2014) and EN MAS’: Carnival and Performance Art of the Caribbean (with Krista Thompson; CAC New Orleans, 2014-15 and ICI New York 2016-18). Tancons was also a guest curator for the BMW Tate Live Series at Tate Modern (2014) and the artistic director of Tide by Side, the opening ceremony of Faena Forum Miami Beach (2016). She is currently the artistic director of etcetera: a civic ritual for Printemps de Septembre in Toulouse, France (2015-17). Tancons is the recipient of an Andy Warhol Foundation Curatorial Fellowship (2008), a Prince Claus Fund Artistic Production Grant (2009), two Curatorial Research Fellowships from the Foundation for Art Initiatives (2007, 2009) and an Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award (2012) among others. She was selected by Artsy as one of the “20 most influential young curators in the United States” in 2016.

Jennifer Koh

Violinist Jennifer Koh is recognized for her intense, commanding performances, delivered with dazzling virtuosity and technical assurance. An adventurous musician, she collaborates with artists of multiple disciplines and curates projects that find connections between music of all eras from traditional to contemporary. She believes that all the arts and music of the past and present form a continuum and has premiered over 50 works written especially for her.

This season, Ms. Koh performs a broad range of concertos that reflects the breadth of her musical interests, including Steven Mackey’s concerto Beautiful Passing with the Baltimore Symphony led by Marin Alsop and Naples Philharmonic led by Eric Jacobsen, Mozart’s First Violin Concerto with the St. Louis Symphony conducted by Nicholas McGegan, Esa-Pekka Salonen’s Violin Concerto with the Cincinnati Symphony led by Santtu-Matias Rouvali, and Sibelius’s Violin Concerto with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra led by Xian Zhang. Ms. Koh will perform world premieres of violin concertos by Christopher Rountree with the new music collective wild Up as part of Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella “From Noon To Midnight” music marathon, and by Vijay Iyer at the 2017 Ojai Festival. She also performs Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 3 at Carnegie Hall with the New York String Orchestra led by Jaime Laredo.

Du Yun

Born and raised in Shanghai, China, currently based in NYC, Du Yun * is a composer, multi-instrumentalist and performance artist. Her music exists at an artistic crossroads of orchestral, chamber music, theatre, opera, orchestral, cabaret, storytelling, pop music, visual arts and noise.

Hailed by The New York Times as a leading figure in China’s new generation of composers, Du Yun’s music is championed by some of today’s finest performing artists, ensembles, orchestras and organizations. Selected commissions include the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Mann Center for the Performing Arts, American Composers Orchestra, Berkeley Symphony, Whitney Museum of American Art, Fromm Foundation, Meet the Composer/ Commissioning USA, Chamber Music America, and Shanghai Electronic Music Week.  Du Yun’s music has also been presented by Festival d’Avignon (France), Muziekgebouw aan ’t IJ (The Netherlands), Musica Nova Helinski (Finland), Ultima Oslo Contemporary Music (Norway), Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik Darmstadt (Germany), Festival Internacional Cervantino (Mexico), Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, BAMNextWave, violinist Hilary Hahn, cellist Matt Haimovitz, and flutist Claire Chase, Trinity Wall Street, Festival of New Trumpet, Ecstatic Music Festival, 21c Liederabend, the San Francisco Contemporary Chamber Players, and many more.

David Krakauer

Internationally acclaimed clarinetist DAVID KRAKAUER redefines the notion of a concert artist. Known for his mastery of myriad styles, he occupies the unique position of being one of the world’s leading exponents of Eastern European Jewish klezmer music, and at the same time is a major voice in classical music. As one of the foremost musicians of the vital new wave of klezmer, David Krakauer tours the globe with his celebrated Klezmer Madness! ensemble. While firmly rooted in traditional klezmer folk tunes, the band “hurls the tradition of klezmer music into the rock era” (Jon Pareles, The New York Times). In addition to his annual European tours to major international festivals and jazz clubs, recent seasons brought Krakauer and his band to the Library of Congress, Stanford Lively Arts, San Francisco Performances, the Krannert Center, Carnegie’s Zankel Hall, the Venice Biennale, Krakow Jewish Culture Festival, BBC Proms, Saalfelden Jazz Festival, Transmusicales de Rennes, La Cigale, New Morning in Paris, and many others.

Kinan Azmeh

Hailed as a “Virtuoso” and “Intensely Soulful” by the New York Times and “Spellbinding” by the New Yorker, and “Incredibly Rich Sound” by the CBC. His utterly distinctive sound across different musical genres has gained him international recognition as clarinetist and composer. Kinan was recently named composer-in-residence with Classical Movements for the 2017-2018 season.

Kinan has been touring the world as soloist, composer and improviser. Notable appearances include: Opera Bastille, Paris; Tchaikovsky Grand Hall, Moscow; Carnegie Hall and the UN’s general assembly, New York; the Royal Albert hall, London; Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires; der Philharmonie; Berlin; the Library of Congress, the Kennedy Center, Washington DC; the Mozarteum, Salzburg, Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie and the Damascus opera house for its opening concert in his native Syria.
He has appeared as soloist with the New York Philharmonic, the Seattle Symphony, the Bavarian Radio Orchestra, the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, the Qatar Philharmonic and the Syrian Symphony Orchestra among others.; and has shared the stage with Yo-Yo Ma, Marcel Khalife, Aynur, Daniel Barenboim and Jivan Gasparian.

His compositions include several works for solo, orchestra, and chamber music; film, live illustration, and electronics. His discography include three albums with his ensemble Hewar, several soundtracks for film and dance, a duo album with pianist Dinuk Wijeratne and an album with his New York Arabic/Jazz quartet the Kinan Azmeh CityBand. He serves as artistic director of the Damascus Festival Chamber Players, a pan-Arab ensemble dedicated to contemporary music form the Arab world. His is a frequent guest faculty at the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music and is on the advisory board of the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra. He is also a member of Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble with whom he was awarded a Grammy in 2017.

Kinan is a graduate of New York’s Juilliard school as a student of Charles Neidich, and of both the Damascus High institute of Music where he studied with Shukry Sahwki, Nicolay Viovanof and Anatoly Moratof, and Damascus University’s School of Electrical Engineering in his native Syria. Kinan earned his doctorate degree in music from the City University of New York in 2013.

Ahmed Gallab

Most days, Sinkane leader Ahmed Gallab puts up a Facebook post like this: “Good morning, my friends! I hope that you have a fantastic day and I love you all!” His music — every note of it — comes straight out of that same sunny generosity of spirit. And never has that spirit been on more vivid display than on the new Sinkane album Life & Livin’ It.

By the time Sinkane finished touring for their acclaimed Mean Love album in late 2015, Ahmed and his ace band had spread the gospel of Sinkane to the world, playing 166 shows in 20 countries. He had also led the supergroup the Atomic Bomb! Band — the highly celebrated 15-piece outfit that played the music of elusive Nigerian electro-funk maestro William Onyeabor. The band included David Byrne, Damon Albarn, members of Hot Chip, LCD Soundsystem, the Rapture, Jamie Lidell and legendary jazz musicians Pharoah Sanders and Charles Lloyd, and they played all over the planet. “Those 14 months really changed my life,” Ahmed says. “Not only did I learn how to put on a special show from leading the Atomic Bomb! Band, but all that touring really brought us Sinkane boys closer as a band.”

Jojo Abot

JOJO ABOT is a Ghanaian artist expressing herself through music, film/photography, literature and performance art. FYFYA WOTO, meaning New Birth – New Discovery serves as the theme and title for her ongoing project exploring SELF as a provocative tool in the discovery, exchange and evolution of the subject of IDENTITY in relation to appropriation vs appreciation in a growing global conversation around shared space and shared identities.

Currently in NYC as a member of New Museum’s incubator program, NEW INC, Abot prepares to go on tour with a supporting slot on the incredible legend, Ms Lauryn Hill’s tour scheduled for fall, 2017 along with upcoming shows presented by Summerstage and Global Fest. A true global fusionist and genre bender in both sound and artistic expression, Jojo Abot is poised to take the world by storm with her uniquely coined AFRO-HYNO-SONIC sound and otherworldly perspective.

International Contemporary Ensemble

The International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) is an artist collective committed to transforming the way music is created and experienced. As performer, curator, and educator, ICE explores how new music intersects with communities across the world. The ensemble’s 35 members are featured as soloists, chamber musicians, commissioners, and collaborators with the foremost musical artists of our time. Works by emerging composers have anchored ICE’s programming since its founding in 2001, and the group’s recordings and digital platforms highlight the many voices that weave music’s present.

A recipient of the American Music Center’s Trailblazer Award and the Chamber Music America/ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming, ICE was also named the 2014 Musical America Ensemble of the Year. The group currently serves as artists-in-residence at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ Mostly Mozart Festival, and previously led a five-year residency at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. ICE has been featured at the Ojai Music Festival since 2015, and has appeared at festivals abroad such as Acht Brücken Cologne and Musica nova Helsinki. Other recent performance stages include the Park Avenue Armory, The Stone, ice floes at Greenland’s Diskotek Sessions, and boats on the Amazon River.

New initiatives include OpenICE, made possible with lead funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which offers free concerts and related programming wherever ICE performs, and enables a working process with composers to unfold in public settings. DigitICE catalogues the ensemble’s performances in a free online streaming video library. ICE’s First Page program is a commissioning consortium that fosters close collaborations between performers, composers, and listeners as new music is developed. EntICE, a side-by-side youth program, places ICE musicians within youth orchestras as they premiere new commissioned works together. Inaugural EntICE partners include Youth Orchestra Los Angeles and The People’s Music School in Chicago. Yamaha Artist Services New York is the exclusive piano provider for ICE.

Website: https://iceorg.org/

Bandcamp: https://iceorg.bandcamp.com/