Ostrava, a smallish Czech city of some 300,000 people about 10 kilometers from the Polish border, hosts the biennial Ostrava Days, a small festival, itself, but with audiences usually numbering a couple hundred. Both city and fest think big. In recent years, Ostrava has seen a remarkable amount of development via commerce and construction, as well as a laudable push to renovate the industrial facilities if its mining past into theaters, galleries and other art spaces. For its part, Ostrava Days is oriented toward big music--the 2015 edition even featuring a night of works for three orchestras--all the while making room for smaller-scale compositions.
While the biannual Ostrava Days in the Czech Republic features, primarily, a wide array of post-1950 solo and small ensemble pieces, it is, at its heart, a symphonic endeavor--founded and curated by Czech composer/conductor Petr Kotik. Over the course of nine expansive nights in August, running this year from the 21st to the 29th, the festival hosted three different orchestras, and all three together on the first night. The Ostrava-based Janáček Philharmonic Orchestra and resident ensemble Ostravská Banda did plenty of heavy lifting over the course of the fest, with the Miners Band from Stonava (a brass group from that nearby town in coal-mining Moravia) joining them on opening night.
UPDATE: Sound/Source will also feature classical pianist and member of Dirty Projectors Olga Bell. Bell is set to perform her techno-experimental rock album Krai, her sonnet to native Russia. Also on the bill is Alvin Lucier’s 1969 minimalist classic I Am Sitting in a Room. This fall, New Amsterdam Records will present Sound/Source, an all-day electronic music festival at MoMA PS1. Produced in collaboration with L3M, the Oct. 19 event will feature Tyondai Braxton, Paul Lansky with members of Roomful of Teeth, Vicky Chow and Tristan Perich, Holly Herndon, Alvin Lucier and Huerco S.
This fall, New Amsterdam Records will present Sound / Source, an all-day electronic music festival at MoMA PS1. Produced in collaboration with L3M, the Oct. 19 event will feature Tyondai Braxton, Paul Lansky (with members of Roomful of Teeth), Vicky Chow and Tristan Perich, Holly Herndon, Alvin Lucier's I am sitting in a room and Huerco S.
This weekend at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble) is presenting three concerts of works by Alvin Lucier, a trail-blazing force in contemporary music for over 50 years. Lucier, himself, will be present at these performances on March 21, 22 and 23 at 7:30 p.m.