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Past Performances

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Performances presented on 2024

Art's Birthday Weathered Piano Exchange
By Jesse Budel and Nadene Thériault-Copeland
January 17, 2024
Listen between 11 am and 1 pm EST on CITR's 24 Hours of Radio Art or between 11 pm and 12 am on Electric Sense on CIUT Radio
Improvisors Jesse Budel and Nadene Thériault-Copeland have been exchanging birthday presents for Art in the form of audio recordings of weathered pianos. The improvisations explore the full range of sonorities of the piano - Nadene Thériault-Copeland on the Decomposing Piano installation at the NAISA North Media Arts Centre in South River, Ontario, Canada, and Jesse Budel at the Murray Bridge Piano Sanctuary in South Australia. This collaborative artwork brings together shared interests in Weathered Pianos as well as a musical discourse created from recordings made on location during the Canadian winter and the Australian summer.
Jesse Budel is a composer-performer, sound artist, producer and arts entrepreneur based in South Australia. His works are for diverse media and spaces, ranging from concert works and installations to community and interdisciplinary collaborations. Jesse Budel is the founder and curator of the Murray Bridge Piano Sanctuary, and currently serves as the Secretary for the World Forum for Acoustic Ecology. Visit his website for more information on his work. Photo credit Malinda-Ro Jenner.
Nadene Thériault-Copeland received her Honours B.A. in Music from York University in 1991 where she studied composition with James Tenney and performance with Christina Petrowska-Quilico. Her interest in improv and alternative tunings led her to create the Decomposing Piano exhibit. Nadene is the Executive Director of New Adventures in Sound Art.
Online Workshop #2 - Expanded Sense
By Dan Tapper
February 17, 2024, 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Online Workshop. Advance Registration Required.
General $25, Click Here to Register
Dan Tapper is an artist and creative technologist interested in the intersection between information and experience. His work focuses on the unseen and unheard, using radio and imaging technologies to capture the sounds of the earth’s ionosphere, map supernovas, and capture microscopic worlds. By utilizing elements of conceptual art and science in his work, Tapper draws attention to the unperceived wonders that surround us and the poetry that can be found in data.
Ghosts of the Ether
Deep Wireless Hybrid Concert #1
February 24, 2024, 1:00 pm
Online via registration. In-person at NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario.
General $12, Click Here to Register
The pieces on this concert conjure mysterious presences out of the ether - everything from pulsars to numbered stations to cultural ghosts of the past. Included are Radio Art works from the Deep Wireless 18 Compilation by Cláudio de Pina, Bekah Simms, Rutmeat and Keith de Mendonca.

I. Neurotransmits by Cláudio De Pina
Neurotransmits (anagram of ‘number stations’) is an electroacoustic composition that explores the eerie and mysterious world of number stations. Featuring sounds from ‘The Buzzer’, ‘The Pip’, Lincolnshire Poacher, among others from different countries. The sounds of the number stations are woven together with the electronic hum and other electronic apparatus, evoking a sense of cold war operations. Other sounds mimic capacitors discharging such as bullets and bouncing balls.
II. String Pulse by Bekah Simms
Using a NASA recording of a pulsar as a starting point, String Pulse by Bekah Simms interweaves processed sounds of space with electric guitar recordings performed by Graham Banfield that are part of Simms’ personal library. There is a serendipitous synergy to these two seemingly disparate sounds - electric guitar seems to live easily amidst sometimes grainy, sometimes rumbling recordings of stars, planets, and other galactic objects. Various interpretations of “pulsar” are used throughout the short work, from the recording itself to granulation in the shape of Carl Sagan’s pulsar map to regular flashes of short, bright guitar harmonics. "String Pulse" was created as part of the Turbulent Forms workshop in 2017 with guidance from Dan Tapper.
III. Your Violence is Soft by Rutmeat
Rutmeat says about this piece, "“I don’t really want to prescribe anything to the listener. The piece is made w contact mics, beaded belongings and a cymbal on the floor.” The piece is mixed by Oscar Vargas.

IV. London Punch by Keith de Mendonca
Let Mr Punch lead you on a sound journey around an imaginary London, its bells and its ghosts. From Samuel Pepys’ birthplace off Fleet Street and across the river Thames to stare into the Great fire. Climb Pentonville hill and dance on the musical grave of “Joey” Grimaldi the clown.
What is in the signal?
Deep Wireless Hybrid Concert #2
March 9, 2024, 7:00 pm
Online via registration. In-person at NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario.
General $12, Click Here to Register
In this event you can listen and discuss radio art pieces with the artists who made them. A book club for experimental audio!

The pieces in this session convey emotions and meaning through the ethereal world of electronic sound and electromagnetic energy. Featured are works from the Deep Wireless 18 Radio Art Compilation by Martín Rodriguez, AJ Cornell, Kat Estacio & Dale Bazar.

I. Entre Temps Perdus by Martín Rodríguez
Entre Temps Perdus is part of a project that began as exploratory sessions between by Rodri?guez and choreographer/dancer Corinne Crane. Together they examined the stretching of a single moment in time and creating a space between contemplation and movement. These sessions began prior to the pandemic, but gained in importance once the realities of the global health crisis took hold.

From these initial experiments, Rodríguez developed an instrument using live radio broadcasts, a theremin, and a single cymbal. Exploring time, movement, and resonance, the result is an unveiling of harmonies and textures merging sounds of a cymbal with those of radio transmission. This unconventional instrument creates music that can be described as Ambient Electroacoustics. The piece "Entre Temps Perdus" further implores the use of field recordings taken as Rodríguez observed a new-found silence emerging out of Montréal’s urban spaces during the early days of the pandemic. The piece was mixed by Martín Rodríguez and monsieur_b with mastering by Sébastien Fournier.
II. Lingap by Kat Estacio and Dale Bazar
Lingap n. (tagalog): compassionate care

One of the ways Kat Estacio learned to tend to and receive care from community during the pandemic was through food. She looked at the work being done by community pantries that had popped-up across the Philippines like the Maginhawa Community Pantry in Quezon City and Community Fridges in Toronto; these local and decentralized initiatives addressed food security in ways that governments (and it's partnered community agencies) could not.

On the piece Lingap, she collaborated with Dale Bazar, a Kulintang musician who studied Ethnomusicology in Manila under the guidance of Kulintang master Aga Mayo Butocan. Dale is also a fellow community organizer and culture producer.

Kat started building the track with a bell/chime synth sound to spell out "Kumain k n b" (have you eaten) in Morse code. This message is usually how she and her beloveds show their care, by asking if we had eaten. She took inspiration from the time when Banana Ketchup was invented (wartime era) and used the rhythm of the Morse code as a foundation to build the piece. The notes she used are based on the tuning of the Kulintang, which is accompanied by some pads and drums. Dale then added kulintang rhythms, flute and some fat beats. Their guiding principle is 8+5: using the 8 gongs of Maguindanaon kulintang from Mindanao and 5 for the pentatonic scale of Kalinga music from Northern Luzon. Together it is 13, the number of the divine feminine, an invitation to turn towards our caring nature and to nourish ourselves and our community. A reminder that to care for each other is revolutionary, that there is strength in togetherness, and what is fed and cared for is what flourishes. Lingap was included in Nusasonic Radio, episode 5: Banana Ketchup, produced by HERESY and WSK.
III. Constriction by AJ Cornell
Constriction by AJ Cornell issues from a confluence of episodes of Chaud pour le mont stone, a radio art programme operated by Martine H. Crispo on CKUT 90.3FM in Montreal since the early 90s. The piece centers on and branches out from an episode where Cornell used re-amped radios, accordion, the high frequency hiss of a radiator, and a tone generator (operated by Mara Fortes) fluctuating between 20 and 30 Hz. Cornell had previously conducted some tests about the limits of FM radio's frequency response. She found that a carrier wave saturated with a low frequency tone could be used to modulate other sources, functioning like a gate of sorts capable of distorting and cutting out the secondary source. This technique (working with frequencies that fall outside of the optimal range of frequencies the FM carrier wave is capable of reproducing with a certain fidelity) has a muffling effect on the other sounds being sent through the transmission. Cornell hears it as constricting the transmission space and creating a muffled aesthetic that elicits an effort on the listening apparatus. The on-air performance with the tone generator was mixed in with elements from other improvised radio performances, some recorded with instruments, small synthesizers, resonant bowls, field recordings of rocks on a thinly iced pond, cassette tape field recording collages, and the lamentations of the metal gate outside the radio studio window.
Reflections on Birth
Multi-channel A/V Performance
By Soft Alchemy and Susan Frykberg
May 11, 2024, 7:00 pm
Online via registration. In-person at NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River, Ontario.
General $12, Click Here to Register
On the eve of Mother’s Day, NAISA presents a hybrid A/V performance with works by Soft Alchemy and the late Susan Frykberg that reflect on giving birth. Susan Frykberg’s Audio Birth Project from 1996-97 consists of works that center around interviews with Frykberg’s sisters and mother on the process of giving birth. Simula by Soft Alchemy is a five movement work that is a reflection on the emotional journey experienced by three Mothers. The Mothers do not know each other, and have never met, yet their experiences are brought together in an inward journey of birth.

This presentation is generously supported by the Canadian Music Centre, Ontario's concert sponsorship program in addition to support from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.

I. Audio Birth Project by Susan Frykberg
The Audio Birth Project consists of a number of different pieces centred around interviews with Susan Frykberg’s sisters and mother on the process of giving birth. Frykberg’s intent was to use interview material as the source for a whole gamut of creative audio responses ranging from abstract composition to sound poetry to narrative to soundscape composition. The works in the series appear on the CD Astonishing Sense on the Earsay label from Vancouver.

The first piece in the series is “Margaret” and it is a three minute work for fixed media.

The second piece is “Astonishing Sense of Being Taken Over by Something Far Greater Than Me” and the 8-minute piece is scored for violin and fixed media. NAISA will present a fixed media version with the violin part played by Nancy Di Novo who originally commissioned this piece in the series. Frykberg says that this piece is based and textually on the process of giving birth. The title is taken from a description by her sister Margaret Bendall of giving birth to one of her sons. Her voice opens and closes the work, and is heard, highly processed, at specific structural points. The tape part also contains granulated violin, synthesized and natural sounds. The work is based on moments of contraction and extension, mirrored by the violinist who in performance alternated playing with prayer.

The third and final piece in the series is the six minute "I Didn't Think Much About It” which was for piano and fixed media. NAISA will present a fixed media version with the piano part played by Andrew Czink.
II. Simula by Soft Alchemy
Simula is an 8-channel audio-visual work created with the sounds of Mothers giving birth, blended with electromagnetic recordings captured at a hospital during labour. The piece is a five movement reflection of the emotional journey experienced by three Mothers. Each of the Mothers gave birth in different ways, varying time spans, and one even in another province. The Mothers do not know each other, and have never met, yet they are remotely connected through the experience they shared.

Simula attempts to take its audience on an inward journey of birth. Through this composition, we are able to bear witness to the "secret" and "hidden" sounds that happen daily; the sounds that reflect the worry, the visceral pain and the overwhelming emotions of giving birth.

Production Credits for Simula:

Creation/Composition - apè aliermo
Generative Visuals - Sahar Homami
Audio Engineer - Rose Bolton
Technician - Kat Estacio

Soft Alchemy For the last 10 years, playing bass, synths and samplers, Soft Academy (aka apè aliermo) has extensively toured North America, Europe and Asia with her rock and electronic bands, Hooded Fang and Phèdre. In 2018, she begun her solo foray into sound art. She mentored under pioneering sound artist Christina Kubisch at the Darmstadt Summer Course New Music Festival, studying and recording "hidden" electromagnetic sounds as well as learning about site specific, immersive sound installations. As a Filipinx-Canadian artist, she attempts to create sonic works that gently ask one to question socio-political systems and reality in an immersive and meditative way.
Susan Frykberg (1954 - 2023) was a sound-artist/composer and poet whose stated goal was "to balance chi-rho spirituality, creativity and social justice." Her works have been heard in Canada, the US, Europe, Asia and Australasia. In addition to her sound-art works, Susan composed for a variety of combinations of electroacoustics, instruments, and chant. Some of this work can be heard on her CD Astonishing Sense, available from earsay.com, and on streaming services. Susan's spiritual and social justice leanings were satisfied in her later years by her work at Urban Seed, The Big Issue, and the Carmelite Library, (coordinator of a spiritual reading group). Susan was a citizen of Canada and New Zealand and held degrees in experimental music and theatre, ancient languages, and theology. She is a member of the Canadian Music Centre, The New Zealand Music Centre (SOUNZ) and SOCAN, and was a founding member of both The World Forum for Acoustic Ecology and the Canadian Electroacoustic Community.