An evening with multi-instrumentalist Chris Abrahams
Chris Abrahams – Dx7
Bryan Eubanks – live electronics
Biliana Voutchkova – violin and voice
Chris Abrahams – Dx7, analog synth
Burkhard Beins – analog synth, live electronics
Andrea Ermke – sampler, field recordings
Chris Abrahams – piano
If we believe Wikipedia, improvisation “is the process of devising a solution to a requirement by making-do, despite absence of resources that might be expected to produce a solution.” Well, fuck Wikipedia. As an improviser, Chris Abrahams does much more than making do, instead he manages to consistently craft patient musical structures from the zero-point of real-time collaboration in a unique musical vocabulary developed over the past 35 years. Tonight, the Sydney based musician (and member of The Necks) displays his voice in three sets; a debut performance of an electronic duo with Bryan Eubanks; teaming up with Berlin’s singular sampler player Andrea Ermke and Echtzeit percussionist Burkhard Beins as the fairly exceptional outfit TREE; and giving a rare Berlin solo piano performance. The night is rounded out by a solo from violinist and improviser, Biliana Voutchkova.
Chris Abrahams was born in Oamaru, New Zealand but grew up in Sydney, Australia. He became very active in the Sydney jazz scene in the early eighties playing with modern jazz groups including Mark Simmonds’ Freeboppers and The Keys Music Orchestra. With Lloyd Swanton he formed the 60’s modern jazz-influenced The Benders in 1982. The band broke up in 1985 after having released three albums – E, False Laughter and Distance.
In 1984 Chris recorded and released his first solo piano album – Piano, followed in 1986 by Walk. In 1985 Chris became a founding member of the Sydney indie rock band The Sparklers. As a result of this, Chris began working regularly with the singer and songwriter Melanie Oxley. Chris collaborated with Melanie, writing songs and producing albums, throughout the nineties. There are five releases with her: Resisting Calm (1990), Welcome to Violet (1992), Coal (1994), Jerusalem Bay (1998) and Blood Oranges (2003). Chris released a third solo piano album Glow in 2001. This was followed in 2003 by Streaming, and Thrown in 2004.
Chris has collaborated, in both recording and performance, with many contemporary improvising musicians including Burkhard Beins, Mike Cooper and Anthony Pateras. He has been a member of the Necks, with Tony Buck and Lloyd Swanson, since 1988. He performs regularly in the improvising music scenes both in Australia and Europe.
Bryan Eubanks (b. 1977) is a musician and composer from the Pacific Northwest of the US. He composes electronic and acoustic works for small ensembles, solo instruments, and custom generative software; improvises in collaboration; and, is developing sound installations and diffusion techniques using acoustic holography. Since 2001 he has participated in many collaborative projects and presented his work internationally. Primarily an autodidact, he received an MFA in 2012 from the Milton Avery School of the Arts at Bard College. He has lived and worked in Portland and New York City, and is currently based in Berlin.
Biliana Voutchkova studies classical violin, in her college years starts being involved with the contemporary and improvised music scene in New York. Dedicated and thoroughly engaged improviser/creator/interpreter whose work spans the widest possible range of music, sound and movement. She has been heard at various festivals and concert series worldwide, her appearances ranging from celebrated concert venues such as Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York, Radial System V in Berlin, and Suntory Hall in Tokyo, to performances in the most vivid experimental places such as Kule, Ausland, Quite Cue and Exploratorium in Berlin, Saal 100 in Amsterdam, and the Knitting Factory in New York. After her 14 years long residence in the USA, Biliana now lives in Berlin and collaborates with the Splitter Orchestra, Solisten Ensemble Kaleidoskop, Das Neue Ensemble, Work in Progress, Sasha Waltz & Guests, Ensemble Modern, MusikFabrik and Insomnio. She is the co-founder of OSM (open sound & movement collective) and her dance/music group GRAPESHADE.
Burkhard Beins, born 1964 in Lower Saxony, lives in Berlin since 1995. As a composer/performer working in the fields of experimental music and sound art he is known for his definitive use of percussion in combination with selected sound objects. Furthermore, he works with live-electronics and analog synthesizers.
Since the late 1980′s he is performing at internationally renowned venues and festivals throughout Europe, America, Australia and Asia as diverse as the LMC Festival (London), Int. Ferienkurse (Darmstadt), SKIF (St. Petersburg), Musiktage (Donaueschingen), Musique Action (Nancy), Choppa Festival (Singapore), Cave 12 (Geneva), The Now now (Sydney), ZKM (Karlsruhe), Kid Ailack Music Hall (Tokyo), Gaudeamus Festival (Amsterdam), Liquid Architecture (Australia), Meteo (Mulhouse), Taktlos (CH), Berghain (Berlin), Serralves (Porto), Wien Modern (Vienna), MoMA (New York), New Music Festival (Hanoi), or Maerzmusik (Berlin).
Alongside his solo work he is a member of the ensembles Polwechsel, Mensch Mensch Mensch, Activity Center, Glück, The Sealed Knot, DNB, Perlonex, Trio Sowari, Tree, Fracture Mechanics, and Splitter Orchester and has also worked with composers/musicans such as Sven-Åke Johansson, Andrea Neumann, Keith Rowe, Axel Dörner, Tarek Atoui, John Tilbury, Mathias Spahlinger, or Charlemagne Palestine.
Andrea Ermke, Berlin