FRIM is proud to present:
Lea Bertucci (saxophone, electronics and reed organ)
John McCowen (amplified contrabass clarinet)
Stina Hellberg Agback, Composition, harp, texts
Leo Svensson Sander, Composition and cello
Magnus Granberg, Composition and prepared piano
Eva Lindal, Violin and vocals
Oona Libens, Animations and shadow plays
Lea Bertucci’s new record, A Visible Length of Light, is a burst of ultra-violent light washed over with textures comprised of saxophone, flute, electronics, and reed organs. The album is built out of recordings made at the Bemis Center of Contemporary Art in Omaha, Nebraska, and field recordings from Rio de Janeiro, coastal California, and Brooklyn, NY. She will be presenting a selection of these new works for FRIM. Haunting refrains meet lush drones for you to pass in and out of consciousness.
John McCowen’s solo works for highly amplified contrabass clarinet are the result of years of developing techniques that break apart the instrument’s sound and reconstruct it into layers of harmonic resonances, distortions, and saturated sub-frequencies. The end result is a zone of visceral expansion. If you’re a fan of Éliane Radigue, Sunn O))) or Merzbow, you’re in for a treat.
In their show Brakfesten, the recently formed artist collective Utopidepartementet takes the role of pleading nature’s cause in the fight for the future of our planet.
Brakfesten takes Olivier Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time into our current state of turbulence and uncertainty as its main point of departure. With newly composed music, shadow plays, and animations, Utopidepartementet explore what it means to be ”at the end of time” in relation to the climate crisis.
For this evening, Utopidepatementet consists of violinist Eva Lindal, composer and harpist Stina Hellberg Agback, composer and pianist Magnus Granberg, composer and cellist Leo Svensson Sander, and the artist Oona Libens. The artists Sanne Hellberg and Johannes Heldén do not attend the event physically but contribute to the show by means of analog and digital animations which are projected during the performance.
Composition, harp, texts - Stina Hellberg Agback
Composition and cello – Leo Svensson Sander Composition and prepared piano – Magnus Granberg Violin and vocals – Eva Lindal Animations and shadow plays – Oona Libens
Brakfesten is made possible through generous support from Musikverket, Kulturrådet, Uppsala Kommun and Helge Ax:son Johnsons Stiftelse.
Det nybildade konstnärskollektivet Utopidepartementet tar i föreställningen Brakfesten på sig rollen att föra naturens talan i kampen om planetens framtid.
Brakfesten tar sin utgångspunkt i Olivier Messiaens stycke Kvartett för tidens ände och dess tillkomst i en tid präglad av turbulens och ovisshet. Med nykomponerad musik och visuella komponenter som skuggspel och animation utforskar Utopidepartementet vad det innebär att vara ”vid tidens ände” i förhållande till vår tids klimatkris.
Utopidepartementet består för kvällen av violinisten Eva Lindal, kompositören och pianisten Magnus Granberg, kompositören och harpisten Stina Hellberg Agback, kompositören och cellisten Leo Svensson Sander samt konstnären Oona Libens. Konstnärerna Sanne Hellberg och Johannes Heldén bidrar på distans med analoga och digitala animationer.
Komposition, harpa, text – Stina Hellberg Agback
Komposition och cello – Leo Svensson Sander
Komposition och piano – Magnus Granberg
Violin och sång – Eva Lindal
Animationer och skuggspel – Oona Libens
Brakfesten genomförs med stöd av Musikverket, Kulturrådet, Uppsala kommun och Helge Ax:son Johnsons Stiftelse.
John McCowen is a composer/performer originally from Southern Illinois. His work focuses on extending the possibilities of the contrabass clarinet. John embraces long-form drones, difference tones, and beating harmonics as a means to extrude the dimensions within. His work has been described by The New Yorker as “the sonic equivalent of microscopic life viewed on a slide”. His music has been released on Edition Wandelweiser, International Anthem, Astral Spirits, Cairn Desk, and others. John was a 2017 & 2019 artist-in-residence at Lijiang Studio in Yunnan, China, and also the 2020 artist-in-residence at ISSUE Project Room in Brooklyn, NY. He received the Elizabeth Mills Crothers Award for excellence in music composition in 2016 from Mills College where he received an MA in Music Composition under Roscoe Mitchell. He currently resides in Reykjavik, Iceland.
John remains stubbornly dedicated to acoustic phenomena. His works do not utilize amplifier feedback or electronically-generated sounds unless specified.
Lea Bertucci is an experimental musician, composer and performer whose work describes relationships between acoustic phenomena and biological resonance. In addition to her longstanding practice with woodwind instruments, her work incorporates spatialized speaker arrays, a timbral approach to composition, radical methods of free improvisation and creative misuses of audio technology. In recent years, her projects have expanded toward site-specific and site-responsive sonic investigations of architecture and acoustics, most notably in 2018’s Acoustic Shadows, a suite of site-specific compositions and sound installation that took place as part of the Breuckenmusik Festival, inside the hollow body of the Deutzer bridge in Koln Germany.
Her autodidactic and idiosyncratic approach to music is marked by dense masses of sustained dissonance, an interest in alternate tuning systems, and a fascination with the sonic material of common experience through field recording. With sounds that defy genre classification, she is unafraid to subvert musical expectation. Tape manipulation and other creative recording techniques push the limits of the recorded medium to illicit a visceral sonic and emotional experience from the listener.
Her discography spans over a decade, with eight releases of full-length solo albums and a number of collaborative projects. In 2018 and 2019, she released the critically acclaimed solo albums Metal Aether and Resonant Field on NNA Tapes and has since gone on to found her own imprint, Cibachrome Editions, with 2021’s A Visible Length of Light as the inaugural release.
Lea is co-editor of The Tonebook, a survey of graphic scores by contemporary composers, published on Inpatient Press in 2018. As a sound designer, Lea has collaborated with dance and theater companies including Big Dance Theater, Pig Iron Theater, and Mallory Catlett.
Her collaborations extend to other chamber-noise projects, including a recently formed duo with vocalist Amirtha Kidambi. This collaboration finds new territory in extending the sonic possibilities of the human voice through electronic manipulation with tape and free improvisation. Their debut album Phase Eclipse was released on Astral Spirits Records in 2019 and followed up with End of Softness EP in 2020.
She has performed extensively across the US and Europe with presenters such as The Museum of Modern Art New York, Blank Forms, Gagosian Gallery NYC, Pioneer Works, The Kitchen, The Walker Museum, PS1, Muziekgebouw Amsterdam, Museo Reina Sofia Madrid, Sound of Stockholm Festival, and Unsound Festival Krakow. In 2018, she was awarded a Jfund for New Music grant from the American Composers’ Forum and a commission for a brass octet from the Levy Gorvy Gallery in New York. She has recently been commissioned by the INA GRM in Paris, Quartetto Maurice in Turin and by ARS Nova Workshop in Philadelphia for new compositions that are forthcoming in 2021/22.
Konstnär / skuggspelare
Oona Libens är en svensk-belgisk bild- och scenkonstnär vars föreställningar rör sig i hybridlandet mellan film, skuggteater, pseudo-vetenskap och poesi. I sitt konstnärskap för hon en media-arkeologisk undersökning som kretsar kring den rörliga bildens historia: från skuggteater (som är film i dess mest elementära bemärkelse) till nutida fenomen som (dator)skärmen och virtual reality. På så vis skapar en dialog mellan historisk och modern teknologi.
I sina mekaniska scenföreställningar illustreras vetenskapliga ämnen som havet, universum, tiden eller kroppen med hjälp av ljus och skuggor. Genom att manipulera analoga projektorer, hemmagjorda lampor och diverse objekt uppstår efemära fantasmagorier, fladdrande skuggor och animerade reflektioner som rör sig genom hela rummet. Resultatet blir immersiva upplevelser i en primitiv och vacklande underhållningsapparat.
The work of artist and musician Oona Libens (Belgium/Sweden) revolves around the history of the (moving) image. In her intimate performances — a hybrid between abstract object theatre and educational documentary — she develops a distinctly crafted universe consisting of fragile mechanisms and analogue techniques.
Often taking shadow theatre as a starting point — shadow play being the most primitive form of moving image — she also operates and manipulates other historic and more recent projection techniques in order to expose its mechanisms. In this way she creates a dialogue between old and modern media phenomena — from the magic lantern as an educational tool to today’s touch screens and virtual reality. With her performances Oona Libens wants to expand our experience of the image and the screen, to create an analogue virtual reality and to make an entertainment machine that is slow, hesitates, falters and fails.
STINA HELLBERG AGBACK
Harpist / komposition /poesi
Stina Hellberg Agback has been performing as an improvising harpist for the past ten years, she has been heard on festivals and venues with her groups Trilobit, Stina Hellberg Agback/Jonas Isaksson Quartet and duo Eva Lindal/Stina Hellberg Agback aswell as many other projects.
As a band leader, she has released four records: Stina Hellberg Agback/Jonas Isaksson Quartet/Quiet Now (2018), Jonas Isaksson/Stina Hellberg Agback (2017), Trilobit/Trilobit (2016) and Trilobit/Brutus (2014). They have all been enthusiastically received as groundbreaking recordings, hoovering between the genres of jazz, folk music and rock. Enthusiastic reviews have been received in magazines such as Downbeat, Orkesterjournalen and Lira.
Hellberg Agback has extensively collaborated with the pop world. Performing with artists such as Frida Hyvönen, Seinabo Sey, El Perro Del Mar and Laleh Pourkarim, as well as appearing on records with Sarah Blasko, Pernilla Andersson, Maia Hirasawa amongst others.
Hellberg Agback holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in jazz performance, from the Royal College of Music, Stockholm. She has also attended Berklee College of Music and Trinity College of Music.
Swedish violinist Eva Lindal is a performer of contemporary and improvised music, as well as a highly regarded Baroque musician. She was a member of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra from 1986 through 1998.
During her years with the Orchestra, Eva established associations with the band Katzen Kapell and the contemporary group MA, connections which continue to this day.
Since 1998, Eva’s main focus has been working with smaller groups, often in collaboration with dancers, poets, actors, and visual artists.
In 2014, Eva produced a travelling concert, Catastrophe in the Jungle, based on the music of her grandfather, the Greek composer Nikos Skalkottas. The show, which mixes Skalkottas’ modernism with Greek folk music and texts from his letters, was created especially for younger audiences and their families. Catastrophe in the Jungle was followed up by MONOLOGOS-DIALOGOS that connect Skalkottas with the Greek composers Aperghis and Xenakis adding improvised comments between the works. In 2022 a third, new program on Skalkottas life and music will follow: Songs from Haidari.
Eva and her sister, violinist Anna Lindal, released the internationally acclaimed duo recording Bäver in the spring of 2020.
Together with Virg Dzurinko, pianist from New York, The Hidden Music of Sofia G. was released on http://sharakanmusic.com in April 2021.
Eva is an honorary member of FST (Swedish Society of
Trailer for Catastrophe in the Jungle
LEO SVENSSON SANDER
Musiker / kompositör
Leo Svensson Sander - Cellist and Musical Saw player in folk, pop, impro and more. Based in Stockholm, Sweden
Leo is working in a wide spectrum of music. He started out with classical music but soon found wider inspiration and for many years mostly focused on experimental music in different forms as well as scandinavian folk music.
From this, avant-pop band "The Tiny" emerged, and was for a long time his main creative hub.
Leo started working together with harpist Stina Hellberg Agback in 2019, creating their duo Namna.
Groups and collaborations, among others: Namna, Time Is a Blind Guide, Fire! Orchestra, Lena Willemark, Matti Bye Ensemble, Skogen.
Studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Music, and the Academy of Music and Drama, Göteborg.
Kompositör / musiker
Magnus Granberg is a composer and performer working at an intersection between contemporary chamber music and improvisation. He is based in Stockholm, Sweden.
Born in Umeå in 1974, he studied saxophone and improvisation at the University of Gothenburg and in New York in his late teens and early twenties. Self-taught as a composer, he formed his own ensemble Skogen in 2005 trying to integrate experiences, methods and materials from various traditions of improvised and composed musics into a new modus operandi. Now mainly working with the ensemble Skogen and the newly formed Skuggorna och ljuset, while increasingly also writing music on commission for different ensembles and projects. He is also active as an improvisor in different contexts, mainly playing the clarinet.
His music has been performed in Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United States, England, Austria, Hungary and Slovenia, broadcast by public radio channels in England (BBC Radio 3 and 6), Germany (SWR 2), Sweden (SR P2), Estonia, Slovenia, Serbia, Hungary and the United States, and has been published by the renowned British record label Another Timbre.
Recent work includes a commission from Another Timbre and Ensemble Grizzana and collaborations with musicians such as David Sylvian, Christoph Schiller and the Swiss duo Diatribes.
He has in the last decade also, more or less regularly, collaborated with musicians such as Angharad Davies, Tisha Mukarji, Tetuzi Akiyama, Toshimaru Nakamura, Anna Lindal, Kristine Scholz, Rhodri Davies, Simon Allen, Christoph Schiller and Ko Ishikawa.
BIO, members of the group that has been working with the project, but not participating in the performance:
Konstnär / poet
Johannes Heldén is a visual artist, writer and musician. His interdisciplinary works deals with poetry, ecology, artificial intelligence, sentience and narrative structures.
Recent projects include the Encyclopedia AI (2015-2018) and New New Hampshire & Clouds (2017, for the Momentum biennial, hybrid installation/publication) and Astroecology (2016) which was published simultaneously in three languages, made into an interdisciplinary performance at The Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm and a digital artwork published by Bonniers Konsthall. He has published four music albums, recently Takträdgårdar (OEI) and System (Irrlicht), and seven digital online works of poetry and visual art.
Awards and fellowships include the inaugural N. Katherine Hayles prize in 2014 (for the Evolution project), and the 2015 Åke Andrén Art Prize, in 2007 he received the Maria Bonnier Dahlin Foundation grant for young artists, and in 2010 the Kalleberg scholarship from the Swedish Academy. He was awarded the 2018 Iaspis New York Fellowship, and is a fellow of the MacDowell Colony, Headlands Center for the Arts, Hawthornden Castle, CCA Andratx, NKD Norway et al.
His work has recently been shown at RIBOCA (The Riga Biennial of Contemporary Art), the Desert X biennial in Palm Springs, Moderna Museet in Stockholm, the 9th Momentum biennial in Moss, Roskilde Festival and Statens Museum for Kunst in Copenhagen, IMPAKT Festival in Utrecht, Kunsthall Trondheim, ISEA in Vancouver, Traces of Existence/ The Jewish Museum in Stockholm, Broken Dimanche in Berlin, Bonniers Konsthall in Stockholm, Centre Pompidou in Paris, Inspace in Edinburgh, UB Center for the Arts Buffalo, The Fifth Moscow Biennale, Upfor Portland, Wendys Subway/ISCP in New York, The Media Archaelogy Lab/University of Colorado, Volt in Bergen, ICIDS Istanbul, NIMK in Amsterdam, Dome of Visions in Copenhagen, UKS in Oslo among others.
He is based in Stockholm and New York.
Scenograf / animatör / projektledare
Sanne Hellberg is an animator, set designer and property master based in Malmö, Sweden. The last years she has been working at different Skåne-based theatres such as Helsingborgs Stadsteater, Malmö Dockteater and Moomsteatern. At the moment she is freelancing as set designer and project manager in several culture- and music projects.
Sanne holds a bachelor degree in Stage production from Malmö Högskola. She has also studied drama at Lunds University and set design at Romerike Folkehøgskole.