My solo improvisational practice is a reimagining of the sound palette of the Viola by building on it’s classical and historic roots and challenging those preconceptions using alterations and preparations to expand the sonic possibilities of the instrument.
I have always felt confined by the culture within classical training that emphasizes an obsession with perfection. In that tradition, a clear and beautiful sound is the only technique culturally acceptable and palatable for expression. This belief felt akin to consuming only happy storylines, which could never encapsulate the large range of humanity. I was searching for a mode of transmission that could include all energetic impulses and allow those aspects to form an all encompassing art practice. In free improvisation, beauty and brutality are interwoven, and the result is a narrative that is about honesty and wholeness of self.
I am very interested in expanding the contexts for freely improvised music and my collaborative ensembles feature computer programers that translate the vibrations of my instrument into generated video installations, ensembles with poets, and dancers. We explore which attempt to blur the divide between modern improvisation and compositional processes.
'Veiled' is my debut solo record released on Relative Pitch Records, is a deep exploration of the sound possibilities for the viola. These improvisations include preparations, which alter the resonance of the instrument, masking its overtly singing and beautiful nature, and allowing for many unexpected and unusual textures.
Yet this music is an attempt to weave a melodic line through the unclear, the fog, the mist, the Veiled, and tap into an impulse that isn't defined by conventional musical language. These pursuits are highly influenced by the study of martial arts, alexander technique, yoga, and the mysteries of subtle energy and how it can be transformed into movement.
As a composer, I have written three open instrumentation scores, 'Taken' for Polyfold Ensemble is an open instrumentation piece assembled remotely during lockdown. I have also composed and performed 'Timeline 1' and 'Timeline 2' for both amplified and acoustic trios. A forthcoming solo viola piece will explore extended technique based poly-rhythms,
Collaboration is a central aspect of music making, and I have played with such luminaries as Marc Ribot and the Young Philadelphians, Mary Halvorson, John Zorn, Erik Friedlander, Nick Dunston, Matt Mitchell, Tyshawn Sorey, Mariel Roberts, and others among New York City's improvised and modern music communities.
My projects are incorporative of many styles including solo improvised prepared viola, string quartets, free jazz, sound installation, Italian chamber-pop bands, orchestral performance, and new collaborations with projects utilizing electronics and generative technologies.
Recent areas of exploration bring improvising and composing sensibilities to new communities. Duo with the poet No Land is a unique pairing of text and soundscape, which also incorporates elements of staging, theatrical timing, and projections. Partnerships with dancers and choreographers have provided a lens for a new direction in creation that was explored during Banff’s Center for Arts and Creativity Residency. A new project with an architect explores resonance, perspective, and translation, opening new contexts for improvisation and audience engagement.
These experiences have culminated in performances throughout various venues including the Whitney Museum, the Rubin Museum, MoMa’s PS1, Carnegie Hall, Roulette, Boston's MFA, The Stone, Joe's Pub, LPR, and arenas and basements throughout the United States, Canada, and China.
I have performed with the pop groups Migos at the YouTube Studios, Chance the Rapper on NBC's Saturday Night Live, SZA on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros on the Tonight Show with David Letterman and in at concert at The Pier One, Bollywood singer Arijit Singh, and NYC bands Tredici Bacci, ANONYM, Cuddle Magic, Ava Luna, and Lip Talk. I have played with the classical music ensembles the North Carolina Symphony, Sinfoncia Nacional of the Domincan Republic, Bard's The Orchestra Now, Six-Week String Quartet tour of China, the dLux Quartet, the Sirius Quartet, and the Publiq Quartet. I performed with Marc Ribot's Young Philadelphians's and it's all star downtown crew including Mary Halvorson, Bern Nix, Calvin C. Weston, Jamal Tacuma,
I have played with the improvisors Weasel Walter, John Zorn, Leila Bordreuil, Lucie Vitkova, Anthony Coleman, John Escreet, Nasheet Waits, Tatsuya Nakataki, Daniel Carter, Craig Harris, and many more. Notable festivals include The Newport Jazz Festival, The NYC Winter Jazzfest, and SxSW. Residencies include Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity’s Creative Gesture: Collective Composition Lab and MoMa PS1’s ALLGOLD. I attended the New England Conservatory of Music and received a bachelors of music in classical viola performance. Primary teachers include Martha Strongin Katz, Junah Chung, Mai Motobuchi, and Jon Handman. I completed the teacher training course in the Alexander Technique from the ATTC Boston, led by Ruth Kilroy. I have completed 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training from Yogaworks.
I am currently studying Aikido at Brooklyn Aikikai.