, Hannah Playhouse, Wellington

Drums that strike themselves. Loudspeakers that pivot and pirouette. Pianos whose keys tap dance ghostly toccatas. Welcome to a brave new world of mechatronic music, where self-playing instruments rule.

Autonomous instruments have fascinated composers since the dawn of the mechanical age. The most famous of these is arguably Georges Antheil’s epic work Ballet Mécanique (1925) – best described as The Rite of Spring meets heavy metal.

In Mechanical Ballet, experience the wonder for yourself as a crowd of mechatronic loudspeakers and percussion instruments come to life – created by Wellington-based musicians/engineers Jim Murphy, Bridget Johnson, Mo Zareei and David Downes. They keep pace with percussionists from leading Kiwi new music ensemble Stroma and top New Zealand pianists Sarah Watkins and Stephen De Pledge.

This concert of virtuosic proportions features two seminal works by US minimalist icon Steve Reich, Drumming Part 1 and Piano Phase, as well as world premieres of works by composers Bridget Johnson, David Downes and Michael Norris. The future starts here.

FEATURING

Stephen De Pledge, Sarah Watkins (piano)

Lenny Sakofsky, Jeremy Fitzsimons, Justin DeHart, Yoshiko Tsuruta (percussion)

PROGRAMME:

Steve Reich Drumming Part I for four percussionists

Mo Zareei Rasping Music for brutalist mechatronic sound-sculptures

David Downes Superflux for robotic drumkit, electronic playback

Michael Norris Tidal Flow for amplified percussion quartet and robotic drums

Bridget Johnson Pas de Quatre for mechatronic loudspeakers

Steve Reich Piano Phase for two pianos

Georges Antheil Ballet Mécanique for two pianos, four percussionists, four MIDI pianos and robotic percussion

Mechanical Ballet (Performance 1)

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, Hannah Playhouse, Wellington

Drums that strike themselves. Loudspeakers that pivot and pirouette. Pianos whose keys tap dance ghostly toccatas. Welcome to a brave new world of mechatronic music, where self-playing instruments rule.

Autonomous instruments have fascinated composers since the dawn of the mechanical age. The most famous of these is arguably Georges Antheil’s epic work Ballet Mécanique (1925) – best described as The Rite of Spring meets heavy metal.

In Mechanical Ballet, experience the wonder for yourself as a crowd of mechatronic loudspeakers and percussion instruments come to life – created by Wellington-based musicians/engineers Jim Murphy, Bridget Johnson, Mo Zareei and David Downes. They keep pace with percussionists from leading Kiwi new music ensemble Stroma and top New Zealand pianists Sarah Watkins and Stephen De Pledge.

This concert of virtuosic proportions features two seminal works by US minimalist icon Steve Reich, Drumming Part 1 and Piano Phase, as well as world premieres of works by composers Bridget Johnson, David Downes and Michael Norris. The future starts here.

FEATURING

Stephen De Pledge, Sarah Watkins (piano)

Lenny Sakofsky, Jeremy Fitzsimons, Justin DeHart, Yoshiko Tsuruta (percussion)

PROGRAMME:

Steve Reich Drumming Part I for four percussionists

Mo Zareei Rasping Music for brutalist mechatronic sound-sculptures

David Downes Superflux for robotic drumkit, electronic playback

Michael Norris Tidal Flow for amplified percussion quartet and robotic drums

Bridget Johnson Pas de Quatre for mechatronic loudspeakers

Steve Reich Piano Phase for two pianos

Georges Antheil Ballet Mécanique for two pianos, four percussionists, four MIDI pianos and robotic percussion

Mechanical Ballet (Performance 2)

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, Great Hall, Auckland Town Hall, Auckland

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Auckland)

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, Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, Hamilton

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Hamilton)

BOOK NOW

, Theatre Royal, New Plymouth

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (New Plymouth)

BOOK NOW

, MTG Century Theatre, Napier

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Napier)

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, Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Wellington)

BOOK NOW

, Nelson School of Music, Nelson

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Nelson)

BOOK NOW

, Glenroy Auditorium, Dunedin

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Dunedin)

BOOK NOW

, The Piano, Christchurch

Author Alex Ross pulled back the curtain for the masses and hit the best seller lists with his compelling and revelatory history of twentieth-century music, The Rest Is Noise.

A tour-de-force of musicology and social history, Ross dispels the elitist myths surrounding modernist and post-modernist masterpieces, allowing audiences to share in his passion for this repertoire.

In partnership with the Auckland Writers Festival, Ross shares the stage with the exquisite mezzo-soprano Bianca Andrew and Aotearoa’s pre-eminent modern music ensemble STROMA. Together they present a musical tasting session that winds through the ages featuring work by Ravel, Bartók, Stravinsky and, of course, the modernist master himself, Schoenberg.

FEATURING

Alex Ross (narrator)

Bianca Andrews (soprano)

Bridget Douglas, Pat Barry, Emma Sayers, Vesa-Matti Leppänen, Andrew Thomson, Ken Ichinose, Hamish McKeich (Stroma)

PROGRAMME:

Arnold Schoenberg Pierrot Lunaire (selections)

Maurice Ravel No. 3 from Chansons Madécasses

Béla Bartók No. 3 from Constrasts

Olivier Messiaen VI from Quartet for the end of time

György Ligeti Balada si joc

Igor Stravinsky ‘Full Fathom Five’ from Three Songs from William Shakespeare

Jenny McLeod For Seven (selections)

Luciano Berio O King

Pierre Boulez Improvisé, pour le Dr. Kalmus

Iannis Xenakis Charisma

Gillian Whitehead Manutaki

Kaija Saariaho Oi Kuu

David Lang Short Fall

Alex Ross with Bianca Andrew (Christchurch)

BOOK NOW