Saturday 30 June 07:00pm

John Zorn's 


6pm doors • 7pm show


In celebration of National Sawdust’s inaugural Hildegard competition and June performance, John Zorn programs a trifecta of concerts celebrating the essential contributions of women to the music canon. This performance is the final one.

This evening is a full, woman-led performance of Cobra (1984), a frequently performed John Zorn masterwork hailed by the New York Times for its “tangible, underlying humor.” A piece for improvisers and prompter, it is an essential snapshot of Zorn’s trademark style of unpredictability.

The composition consists of a set of cues notated on cards, and rules corresponding to the cues that direct the players what to do. The number of players, instrumentation, and length of the piece is indeterminate. Because there is no traditional musical notation and the players improvise, the piece may sound radically different from performance to performance.

Tonight’s performers include some of Zorn’s most notable collaborators and featured artists in his Stone Commissioning Series, held monthly at National Sawdust.


Ava Mendoza, guitar
Wendy Eisenberg, guitar
Zeena Parkins; keyboards, electric harp
Sylvie Courvoisier, piano
Annie Gosfield, keyboards
Ikue Mori, electronics
Okkyung Lee, cello
Kirsten Lamb, bass
Sae Hashimoto; vibes, percussion
Ches Smith, percussion

National Sawdust