Mission History Press Staff Support Home

Installment IX
February 3 & 4, 2006

PAUL DRESHER is an internationally active composer and musician noted for his ability to integrate diverse musical influences into his own coherent and unique personal style. He has pursued many forms of musical expression including experimental opera and music theater, chamber and orchestral composition, live instrumental electro-acoustic chamber perform-ances, musical instrument invention and scores for theater, dance, and film. Dresher has performed and had his works performed throughout North America, Asia and Europe. As Artistic Director of his contemporary chamber group, the six-member Paul Dresher Ensemble Electro-Acoustic Band, he has guided the creation of the American Trilogy, a set of experimental operatic works that address different facets of American culture in collaboration with writer/performer Rinde Eckert. Dresher has worked extensively with many choreo-graphers including Margaret Jenkins, Brenda Way/ODC San Francisco, and Nancy Karp + Dancers. In 2001 Dresher built and composed Sound Stage, a music theater work performed on a set composed entirely of very large-scale invented musical instruments, commissioned and performed with the new music ensemble Zeitgeist.

Dresher will be performing new music from Slipping Glimpse, a collaboration in progress for the Margaret Jenkins Dance Company, on one of his invented instruments, the quadrachord, with electronic percussionist Joel Davel, who will be playing an electronic percussion controller called marimba lumina.




Artistic director/choreographer NANCY KARP has been making work in San Francisco for over two decades, creating more than 70 dance works for her San Francisco-based company Nancy Karp + Dancers. Karp and the company have toured throughout the U.S. and abroad, including extended artist residencies in Germany, the former Yugoslavia, India, and Japan. Karp has received numerous grants and awards for her work, including the Bay Area Dance Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2005 and a Fulbright Senior Research Fellowship to India. Karpšs evening-length work, Kristallnacht, created in collaboration with composer Alvin Curran premiered before sold-out houses in San Francisco. Other major works which have toured internationally include Prima Materia with music by Ingram Marshall, First Light with sound score by Bill Fontana, and Dot Bunc with music by Charles Amirkhanian. "...work of the utmost intellectual rigor and refinement" (DANCE MAGAZINE). This year, Nancy Karp + Dancers celebrates its twenty-fifth season.

Nancy Karp + Dancers will be performing Jaisalmer, the second of three sections from Karp's full evening collaboration with Paul Dresher, KALASAM, accompanied by Paul Dresher and Joel Davel.



Butoh masters KOICHI & HIROKO TAMANO are the directors of Harupin-Ha Butoh Dance Theatre. Former students of Tatsumi Hijikata, one of the original founders of Butoh, the Tamanos devotion to the mastery of dance is expressed through works that are at once beautiful, graceful, shocking and grotesque. Koichi has worked closely with numerous musicians, visual artists and designers, most notably, with Grammy award winning musician Kitaro in their acclaimed collaboration Tamayura. Japan's famed author, Yukio Mishima, considered Koichi to have the most perfect body of all the dancers in Hijikata's studio. Harupin-Ha's captivating performances have been lauded by audiences worldwide.

Koichi & Hiroko Tamano will be performing Our Breath is as Thin As a Humming Bird's Spine, an excerpt from Nanos Operetta's The Spoon on the Table, accompanied by Nanos Operetta and Edmund Welles.



EDMUND WELLES: THE BASS CLARINET QUARTET has the distinction of being the world's only original, composing band of four bass clarinets. Led by composer/arranger Cornelius Boots, Edmund Welles uses the sonorous timbre of this potent instrumentation to invent and perform their unique brand of heavy chamber music, muzak for conspiracy theorists, and songs of lunacy and purpose. This unique configuration of four bass clarinets is comprised of the Bay Area's most virtuosic clarinetists. From Satie to Sepultura, Edmund Welles' melodic, frenetic music is an exploration into the remarkable tone and range of this rarely featured instrument.

Edmund Welles will be performing sections from their Chamber Music America commissioned work Agrippa's 3 Books, inspired by occult philosophy and heavy metal music.



NANOS OPERETTA is a new music ensemble working in extended song forms, blending cinematic sound collages, seamless juxtapositions, shifting backgrounds, recurring motifs and vocal narrations. Employing unconventional instrument-ation and found objects, they incorporate elements of ethnic, film, modern chamber and cartoon music into meditations on themes of love, disease, and revolution. Nanos Operetta has worked with Myra Melford, Frank Pahl, Koichi & Hiroko Tamano, Ledoh, and Sha Sha Higby. They are 2004 Isadora Duncan award recipients for their score to Harupin-Ha's evening-length work Serei. Nanos Operetta will be performing excerpts from their work The Spoon on the Table with special guest aerialist Abigail Munn and selections from their score to Bahman Kiarostami's film Persian Garden.