Tom Hall Free .Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Explore the many ways that improvisation enlivens the arts and sciences; inspires individual and group creativity; and encourages cultural innovation at the first annual Brandeis Improv Festival, the weekend of March 27-29th 2015. This three day festival, which is free and open to the public, will be filled with concerts, live performances, panel discussions and workshops, featuring a diverse range of mediums and artistic genres, from free jazz legend Milford Graves to pioneer turntablist Mister Rourke; fine art demonstrations to new technology playshops. This is a new festival curated by Tom Hall which we are hoping will become an annual event, and we are very excited to bring these world class improvising musicians and artists to the Brandeis University campus.

The Festival opens on Friday afternoon, March 27th at 3:00 with an open discussion on “Improvisation and Social Transformation” between Tom Hall (author of “Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide”) and Cindy Cohen (director of the program in Peace building and the Arts), followed at 5:00 by a multimedia improvisation (Shapiro Student Center) between artist Lennie Peterson, Tom Hall (sax), and Marty Ballou (bass). The first day concludes with a concert beginning at 7:00 pm, featuring virtuosic jazz pianist Tim Ray; the Bob Nieske 4 (Bob Nieske, Phil Grenadier, Dave Tronzo and Jon Hazilla) playing "free music and written music freely"; swinging interpretations of the American Songbook by the April Hall Quintet (April Hall, Tim Ray, Tom Hall, Marty Ballou, Les Harris, Jr.), and a solo performance by legendary free jazz drummer Milford Graves.

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Saturday March 28th, drummer, healer and polymath Milford Graves gives the Keynote Address at 11:00. Sarah Hickler (Emerson College) conducts an Action Theater Workshop at 1:00, followed by a 3:00 panel discussion “Creativity, Learning, and Improvisation” with art historian Peter Kalb, improvising musician Tom Hall, movement and theater specialist Sarah Hickler, and neuroscientist Eric Rosenbaum. At 5:00, innovative Djs Mister Rourke and Axel Foley conduct a workshop on “Turntables as an Instrument” and at 6:30 Eric Rosenbaum (MIT MediaLab) hosts a MaKey MaKey Playshop. The Brandeis Improv Festival Dance Party, beginning at 7:00 brings you a mashup of dance music from the past, present and future, featuring Guttmann’s Klezmer All Stars (Mimi Rabson, Michael McLaughlin, Jim Guttmann and Grant Smith) turntable duo Mister Rourke and Axel Foley, and Club d’Elf (Mister Rourke, Tom Hall, Paul Schultheis, Mike Rivard, Dean Johnston); along with the live video art of Greg Kowalski and special guest dancers.

Sunday March 29th opens with a 12:00 workshop on "Perception and Expression" at the Rose Art Museum, hosted by art historian Peter Kalb and improviser Tom Hall. Focus on the visual arts continues at 2:00 with a live art demonstration with painter, printmaker and public artist Jane Goldman and improvisational action painter Chris Gill, accompanied by keyboardist Dave Bryant (of Ornette Coleman’s Prime Time). The Brandeis Improv Festival closes with an extravaganza of improvisation beginning at 5:00, featuring the music of the twenty four member Brandeis Improv Collective (with special guest Dave Bryant), and a smorgasbord of on-campus improv comedy, dance and theater groups.

All events will be at the Slosberg Recital Hall on the Brandeis Campus in Waltham, Massachusetts, unless otherwise indicated. The Brandeis Improv Festival is sponsored by the Brandeis Arts Council.

Full Festival Program of Events Improv Festival Poster Improv Festival Program and Brochure Press Release

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Milford Graves is an American jazz drummer and percussionist, born August 20, 1941 in Jamaica, New York. Started playing drums at 2 years old. Studies in African and Afro-Caribbean music/drumming started at 8 years old. Started studying Jazz in early teens. In 1965, studied North Indian Music-tabla drumming with Doctor Wasantha Singh. Listed in Who's Who in America, and many other publications. During the past 50 years has performed/collaborated/recorded with: Albert Ayler, Anthony Braxton, Larry Coryell, Bill Frisell, Bill Laswell, Joe Lovano, David Murray, Evan Parker, William Parker, Don Pullen, Sun Ra, Lou Reed, Roswell Rudd, Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, Cecil Taylor, John Tchicai, John Zorn and many others. Have done many music concerts (1966-present [USA/Europe/Japan/Nigeria]), and has given countless lecture-demonstrations and workshops on Medicine (herbology, acupuncture, nutrition, etc.), and Body-Movement/Martial Arts on an international level. From 1971-73, developed and conducted a clinical laboratory for a private animal hospital in New York. On July 1, 1993, a special 45 minute documentary video, titled "Legend Drummer Milford Graves," was televised throughout Japan on NHK-Television at a time called the Golden Hour. Was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship in music composition in 2000, received a Proclamation from New York City at City Hall on January 19, 2005 for research on the conversion of Heart Sounds to Music. Lifetime of Achievement award by Vision Festival, NY, 6/2013.

Professor of Music - Music Healing at Bennington College in Vermont (1973- 2012). Since January 2014 collaborating with Professor Carlo Ventura [School of Medicine-U of Bologna, Italy] on the effects of melodic patterns formed from heart sounds on micro-cellular activity (results have been extremely positive). More about Milford Graves


-Milford Graves, Performs
Friday, March 27th, 2015
9:00 pm at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

-Milford Graves, Talk “Improvisation”
Saturday, March 28th, 2015
11:00 am at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA


Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Tim Ray Perhaps best known as long-time pianist for Lyle Lovett, Tim Ray’s wide-ranging skills as a soloist and accompanist have afforded him the opportunity to perform with legendary performers from all walks of music. Appearing on over 70 recordings to date, Tim has performed in concert with an extensive list of pop music icons, notably Aretha Franklin, Bonnie Raitt, Jane Siberry and Soul Asylum. He regularly performs with leading figures in the jazz world, among them Gary Burton, Esperanza Spalding, Phil Woods, Scott Hamilton, Dave Douglas, Brian Blade, Lewis Nash and Rufus Reid, and his classical credits include solo performances and concerts with Gunther Schuller, the Boston Pops, the Boston Modern Orchestra Project and the Boston Classical Orchestra.

Tim’s busy schedule has included frequent tours throughout the Americas, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, and has included performances at Carnegie Hall, the White House, the Kennedy Center and the 1992 Presidential Inauguration. Tim has also performed repeatedly on “The Tonight Show” (Johnny Carson, Jay Leno), “Late Night with David Letterman,” “The Conan O’Brien Show,” “Austin City Limits” and various other national TV and radio broadcasts. He released his first CD as a leader in 1997 - Ideas & Opinions - on Gunther Schuller’s GM Recordings label, which featured drummer Lewis Nash and bassist Rufus Reid. His second self-led CD was released in 2003 - Tre Corda - and includes Greg Hopkins on trumpet and Eugene Friesen on cello. This “chamber jazz” trio has just released their next recording - Squeaky Toy - which features original compositions and music by Bela Bartok. Tim also has two new solo piano CDs: a collection of original compositions and improvisations entitled On My Own, vol. 1 – New Works, and a soon-to-be-released volume of pieces from some of the great American composers of popular song.

A sought-after arranger and composer, Tim has penned numerous original works for his trio Tre Corda, for solo piano, big band, string orchestra, and an extensive body of writing for jazz trio and quartet. He is a grant recipient from the National Endowment for the Arts, and is currently on the faculty of the Berklee College of Music. Tim was previously on the faculty of the New England Conservatory of Music, has lectured and taught improvisation at Harvard University and MIT, and also conducts workshops and clinics at colleges and high schools throughout the U.S. and Canada. More about Tim Ray

-Tim Ray, Talk “Modern Improvising”
6:30 pm at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

-Tim Ray Solo Performance Friday, March 27th, 2015
7:00 pm at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

-April Hall Quintet, Friday, March 27th, 2015
9:00 pm at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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DJ’s Mister Rourke and Axel Foley

Incorporating cutting, scratching, blending, and mixing alongside top musicians, Boston based scratch DJ’s Mister Rourke and Axel Foley are innovators of using the turntable as an as instrument. Their take on the turntable is unlike most and can only have come from over two decades of playing in bands with top level musicians. Their focus has been playing in live, improvisational ensembles and are well known for the quality of their ears, the size of their sound arsenal, their level of facility, and for pushing the creative envelope. They have performed and recorded with countless bands in several genres of music including Hip Hop, Funk, Reggae, Jazz, Electronic, Blues, Ambient, Moroccan, Trip Hop, R&B, African and even Gospel. Their work, which has earned them four Boston Music Awards, has been featured in Billboard Magazine, MTV’s The Real World and HBO’s The Chris Rock Show.

Rourke and Foley have done shows supporting De La Soul, Jamiroquai, Maceo Parker, The Meters, Phish, Henry Rollins, P-Funk, Fishbone, Bernie Worrell, The Disco Biscuits, John Scofield, WAR, Galactic, Buju Banton, Black Sheep, The Jungle Brothers, J-Live, Dilated Peoples, Pharoahe Monch, Big Daddy Kane, Grand Master Flash, The Executioners, LL Cool J and KRS-ONE (to name a few), in huge arenas such as The Apollo Theater, The Fillmore, and The Boston Garden.

Their extensive range of projects include: Jazz Meets Hip Hop concert at The Cleveland Jazz Festival, Cultural Constructions at Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art, Billy Martin’s Drop The Needle-Remixes & Breakbeats, the Soulive Re-Mix album, DJ Night at The San Francisco Funk Festival, video game scores, Boston Unity Hip Hop Festival, Club d'Elf, The Turntable Demolition Team (improvisational scratch symphony), multiple long running weekly DJ residencies and "Turntables as an Instrument" a DJ workshop they developed and teach at public schools, non-profit organizations, music festivals and colleges. More about Mister Rourke and DJ Axel Foley

-Rourke and Foley Workshop and Talk Saturday March 28th, 2015
5pm Slosberg Music Center

-Rourke and Foley Perform Saturday March 28th, 2015
8pm at Slosberg Music Center

-Mr. Rourke joins Club D’elf, Saturday March 28, 2015
10pm Slosberg Music Center


Turntables as an Instrument This exciting DJ workshop exposes students to the art form of using the turntable as a musical instrument, offering an opportunity for music enthusiasts to learn how to DJ, from mixing and blending to scratching and beat juggling. Developed by veteran DJ/producers Mister Rourke & Axel Foley, this workshop establishes the turntable musician as the ultimate instrumentalist, the only limitation being the size of one’s imagination. Students will receive a DJ history lesson, as well as an equipment/cost description. They will review turntablist fundamentals, learn techniques and explore the latest terminology and technology. There will be a Q & A session, as well as a “hands on” opportunity for interested students to test out their own turntable skills.
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Tom Hall, Brandeis Improv Artistic Director

"From the moment we're born, until the moment we die; from the most creative artistic endeavor to the most mundane action, improvisation is an inextricable part of human life. Life is one big improvisation, and we are all master improvisers." -Tom Hall

Tom Hall has toured throughout the US and Europe performing and recording in a wide variety of musical styles, appearing on over 30 CDs, and playing at many festivals, including The Boston Globe Jazz Festival, Moers Music Festival (Germany),and Bang on a Can New Music Festival (NYC). He has also collaborated with a wide variety of musicians, including John Medeski, D.J. Logic, Reeves Gabrels, Duke Levine, Brahim Frigbane, and Jacques Morelenbaum. He is an instructor at Brandeis University and MIT, the author of "Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide", and the host and creator of ImprovLive 365. More about Tom Hall

-Improvisation and Social Transformation
3pm Slosberg Music Center, Friday, March 27th, 2015

An open discussion exploring the relationship between improvisation and social transformation, with Tom Hall (author of “Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide”) who writes and teaches about improvisation, and Cindy Cohen (director of the Brandeis Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts), who writes and teaches about work at the nexus of the arts, culture, justice and peace.

-April Hall Quintet, Friday, March 27th, 2015
9pm at Slosberg Music Cente
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-Creativity, Learning and Improvisation
3pm Slosberg Music Center, Saturday, March 28th, 2015
What are the connections between creativity, learning and improvisation?  That’s the subject of this panel discussion with Contemporary Art historian Peter Kalb, improvising musician and educator Tom Hall, movement specialist and theater educator Sarah Hickler, and neuroscientist Eric Rosenbaum from MIT MediaLab.

-Brandeis Improv Festival Dance Party
7pm Slosberg Recital Hall, Saturday, March 28th, 2015
The Brandeis Improv Festival Dance Party brings you a mashup of dance music from the past, present and future. Featuring the old world grooves of Guttmann’s Klezmer All Stars, turntable innovators Mister Rourke and Axel Foley, and the Moroccan dosed dub-trance-electronica excursions of Club d’Elf; along with the live video art of Greg Kowalski, and special guest dancers.

-Club D’elf
9pm at Slosberg Music Center, Saturday, March 28th, 2015


-Brandeis Improvisers Variety Show, with special guest Dave Bryant
5pm Slosberg Recital Hall, Saturday, March 28th 2015

The Brandeis Improv Festival closes with an extravaganza of improvisation, featuring the music of the twenty four member Brandeis Improv Collective (with special guest Dave Bryant), and a smorgasbord of on-campus improv comedy, dance and theater groups.
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Bob Nieske 4

Bob Nieske (Basses) mentored under Jimmy Giuffre as bassist and composer in Giuffre’s quartet for 12 years. His compositions are challenging, accessible and melodic. Like Giuffre, Bob comes at things from a melodic perspective and the free playing generally comes out of a written or at least guided situation. Some musicians he has recorded or performed with are Alan Dawson, Dave Grisman, Stephane Grappelli, George Russell, Jay Geils, Attila Zoller, Dakota Stayton, John Blake, Jackie and Roy, Richie Cole, and Larry Coryell. Faculty Brandeis University and New England Conservatory. More About Bob Nieske

Phil Grenadier (Trumpet, Flugelhorn) has appeared on 50 CD's, recording with such artists as Kenny Barron, Larry Goldings, Chris Potter, Jerry Bergonzi, Anthony Braxton, George Garzone, Mick Goodrick, Brad Shepik, Billy Kilson, John Hollenbeck, Gerald Cleaver, Bob Moses, Drew Gress, Larry Grenadier, Ira Coleman, etc. In 2007 he toured internationally with John Scofield alongside bassist Steve Swallow.

Jon Hazilla (Percussion) has performed and or recorded with, Jo Anne Brackeen, James Williams, John Hicks, Billy Taylor Aaron Goldberg Ray Drummond, Ron Carter, George Garzone, Benny Golson Billy Pierce, Steve Grossman, Larry Coryell, Kenny Wheeler, Sheila Jordan, Ran Blake and Max Roach. He continues to perform in countless global festivals from The Azores, to Costa Rica, Warsaw, Rome, Nice and Kyoto to name a few. Faculty Berklee College of Music

Dave Tronzo
(Slide Guitar, Gizmos) takes slide and “prepared” guitar techniques and applies them to jazz and improvised music. In 1993 he was voted one of the 100 best guitarists of the 20th century by Musician Magazine’s Press Poll and in 1997 Guitar Player magazine voted him one of the Dirty Thirty Pioneers and Trailblazers. As much of a joy to watch as listen to. Faculty Berklee College of Music.



-Bob Nieske 4 Performs March 27th, 2015
8:00 pm at Slosberg Music Center

Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Club d’Elf

Club d'Elf is an ever-shifting group of musicians fiercely dedicated to "the groove", revolving around the foundation of bassist/leader Mike Rivard. Consisting of some of the most sought-after players from the jazz, rock & world music scenes of Boston & NYC, each show features a different line-up, with Rivard and drummer Dean Johnston forming the axis. Guitars, turntables, Fender Rhodes, laptops, horns, tablas and all manner of exotic instruments flow in and out of the mix, along with guests such as John Medeski & Billy Martin (MMW), DJ Logic, Marc Ribot, Skerik, and Marco Benevento, creating a unique experience for every performance. Informed as much by sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick's ideas of shifting reality and parallel universes as by the music of Miles Davis & Fela Kuti, the band draws inspiration from many sources, including neo-psychedelic avatar Terence McKenna, whose writings inspired the group's name.

Formed in 1998 by Rivard with the encouragement of Morphine's Mark Sandman (who guested with the group until his death in '99), the music draws from a startlingly wide spectrum of styles, including jazz, hip hop, electronica, avant garde, prog-rock and dub. Under the tutelage of member Brahim Fribgane (who hails from Casablanca) the band absorbed Moroccan trance influences and frequently adds this element to the mix. Audiences of all persuasions are drawn to Fribgane’s mesmerizing oud stylings and Rivard's commanding playing of the Moroccan sintir, a 3 string bass lute used by the Gnawa people of Morocco, a mystical Sufi brotherhood descended from sub-Saharan slaves brought to Morocco over 500 years ago. Derived from such ancient sources as these, trance forms a central core of the Club d'Elf aesthetic, unifying all of the various genres the band has absorbed.

The band's bi-weekly residency at The Lizard Lounge in Cambridge, MA has become the stuff of legend, and over the course of it's 14 year history D'Elf has toured Japan five times and played clubs and festivals throughout the North and Southeast US. Equally at home playing late-night festival sets for the rave/burner crowd as it is for a largely Muslim audience (as it did at the 2007 Festival Du Monde de Arabe in Montreal), boundaries melt away and all are drawn into the intoxicating power of the D'Elf groove. Finding its natural habitat to be playing live, the band has released 9 double-live CDs over the course of its career. In 2011 the band released its magnum opus, Electric Moroccoland/So Below (its second studio release and the first on its new Face Pelt Records label), which drew glowing reviews from PRI's The World, Voice Of America, and Afropop Worldwide for its bold synthesis of Moroccan traditional music and electronic, dubbed-out funk. A double CD that features over 20 musicians (including a chief of the Dagbon people of Ghana and some of the last recorded performances of Sandman's) it most fully captures the range of the band's music, from Gnawa and Berber music to Squarepusher-influenced drum'n'bass, and introduces vocals to the band's primarily instrumental focus, including Gnawa legend Hassan Hakmoun singing Cream's "Sunshine Of Your Love" in Moroccan Arabic. Its latest release is Fire In The Brain - Live at Berklee, which AllAboutJazz.com deemed a "...fevered and inspired performance". More about Club d’Elf

"Crushed between the borders of Morocco, jam band land and the kingdom of avant-garde jazz lies Club d’Elf...James Brown-meets-Sun-Ra." - Jed Gottlieb, Boston Herald

-Club d’Elf Performs, Sat March 28th, 2015
10:00 pm at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

Video Club d’Elf


Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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April Hall

April Hall combines her deep roots in southern gospel and blues with an urban soulfulness and jazz sophistication. Her voice, described as “Glorious” by the Boston Globe, is an instrument of astonishing beauty and versatility, capable of ranging from the purest whisper to the most powerful soul-drenched delivery. But her masterful performances are always centered on bringing every song to life through emotional interpretation, playful phrasing, and rock solid rhythm. “The exquisite, soulful vocals of April Hall deliver every lyric with emotion and conviction.” - Jazz Times Magazine

Hall graduated from Berklee College of Music, where she received the prestigious Louis Armstrong Performance Award. She has done projects for Atlantic Records under the direction of Arif Mardin, for the likes of Chaka Khan, Melissa Manchester, Al Jarreau and Bette Midler and has performed with artists such as Rosemary Clooney, Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius and Dinah Shore.

Hall is also an award winning songwriter. Her music has been featured on Boston's "Women in Music" series, on "The Coffeehouse”, WGBH’s “Eric in the Evening” and the nationally syndicated "Jazz After Hours" with PRI's Jim Wilke. In addition to her ongoing performances, Hall also continues to work with students across the country holding master classes in modern vocal techniques and on the subject of "Songwriting in a Free Society". More about April Hall

"Hall makes the lyric jump and sit up with her vocal acrobatics.” -All About Jazz

"The exquisite, soulful vocals of April Hall deliver every lyric with emotion and conviction." -Jazz Times

April is joined by her all star band with: Tim Ray (piano), Marty Ballou (bass), Tom Hall (Saxes) and Les Harris Jr. (drums)

-April Hall Quintet, Friday, March 27th, 2015
9pm at Slosberg Music Cente
r
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Sarah Hickler is a performer, director, movement specialist and theater educator. She has devoted much of her professional life to the study, practice, performance and teaching of improvisational dance and theater. Her performance work has been produced throughout New England, at Lincoln Center Festival in New York City, the Mercury Theatre in the U.K. She has collaborated and performed with a variety of Action Theater ensembles, theatre, dance and media artists from the U.S. and abroad. She has over 20 years experience teaching acting, movement and improvisation in professional settings, and she is currently the Head of Acting and Head of Movement Training in the Department of Performing Arts at Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts. She is a certified Authentic Movement facilitator, and is a Certified and Recommended teacher of Action Theater.

-Sarah Hickler, Saturday, March 28th, 2015
1pm Action Theater Demonstration and Workshop
Slosberg Music Center, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA


-Creativity, Learning and Improvisation
3pm Slosberg Music Center, Saturday, March 28th, 2015

What are the connections between creativity, learning and improvisation? That’s the subject of this panel discussion with Contemporary Art historian Peter Kalb, improvising musician and educator Tom Hall, movement specialist and theater educator Sarah Hickler, and neuroscientist Eric Rosenbaum from MIT MediaLab.

Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Dave Bryant

Keyboardist and composer Dave Bryant is best known for his work as a member of Ornette Coleman’s Prime Time group. Bryant joined the band in 1990, touring worldwide and performing on Prime Time’s “Tone Dialing” CD. Bryant’s first CD was with his own trio in 1986, featuring bassist John Turner, percussionist Chris Bowman, and liner notes by Coleman. In 1999, Bryant released a second CD, “The Eternal Hang,” with Turner, Bowman, saxophonist George Garzone, drummer Bob Gullotti, and noted recording engineer Roger Nichols. That same year he also performed on the John Tchicai /Charlie Kohlase Quintet CD, “Life Overflowing,” named Boston Music Awards Jazz Album of the Year. Other credits include performances with Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Badal Roy, Bern Nix, Calvin Weston, Wadada Leo Smith, Leroy Jenkins, Rakalam Bob Moses, Gregg Bendian, and Eric Person. Most recently, he has performed in Chicago, San Francisco, Paris, and Istanbul. More about Dave Bryant

-Chris Gill & Dave Bryant, Sunday March 29th, 2015
2:00 pm The Creative Process: Live Painting
Slosberg Music Center, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

-Brandeis Improvisers Variety Show, special guest Dave Bryant
5pm Slosberg Recital Hall, Saturday, March 28th 2015

The Brandeis Improv Festival closes with an extravaganza of improvisation, featuring the music of the twenty four member Brandeis Improv Collective (with special guest Dave Bryant), and a smorgasbord of on-campus improv comedy, dance and theater groups.



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Jane Goldman

Jane Goldman’s response to the visual world was formed by growing up in North Texas, where the overwhelming physical facts are light, flatness and air. Her subject is light and the natural world. She works from a combination of free association and direct observation, compelled by the way light and shadow create meaning in the way things look; and is equally interested in looking within to depict incorporeal works of imagination.

Painter, printmaker, and public artist, Goldman has been described as “an artist of vision and precision,”1; “one of this country’s most exciting watercolorists,”2; and “a true cognoscenti of the medium.”3 Her 60,000+ terrazzo installation at Boston’s Logan Airport is noted as one of the area’s most successful public art endeavors.4 Goldman is also a well-known printmaker, with works on paper in hundreds of public and private collections.

Goldman has a BA from Smith College and an MFA from the University of Wisconsin. She is co-owner of Mixit Print Studio in Somerville, Massachusetts. She has taught at Massachusetts College of Art, the University of California Los Angeles, Rice University, and the University of Hartford; and been a visiting artist at institutions including Harvard University, the University of Wisconsin, Smith College, Wellesley College, and Artist Proof South Africa.

Goldman exhibits and works nationally and internationally, with grants from the Massachusetts Council on the Arts, MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and fellowships from the Ballinglen Arts Foundation, Ireland, the Oberpfalzer Kunstlerhaus, Germany, and the Cité des Arts in France. More About Jane Goldman

-Jane Goldman, Sunday March 29th, 2015
2:00 pm The Creative Process: Live Painting
Slosberg Music Center, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Eric Rosenbaum

Eric Rosenbaum is a doctoral student in the Lifelong Kindergarten group, where he creates new technologies at the intersection of music, improvisation, play and learning. His projects include software for finger painting with sound, painting with light, improvising with looping sounds, and creating interactive behaviors in 3D virtual worlds. His recent speaking appearances have included TEDx Pioneer Valley, Economist Tech Frontiers, and Dust or Magic App Camp. His work has been shown at venues including San Francisco Exploratorium, the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, San Jose Tech Museum, and the OFFFmatica and CineKid festivals. More about Eric Rosenbaum and MakeMakey

-Creativity, Learning and Improvisation, Saturday, March 28th, 2015
3pm Slosberg Recital Hall
What are the connections between creativity, learning and improvisation? That’s the subject of this panel discussion with Contemporary Art historian Peter Kalb, improvising musician and educator Tom Hall, movement specialist and theater educator Sarah Hickler, and neuroscientist Eric Rosenbaum from MIT MediaLab.

-MaKey MaKey Playshop, Saturday March 28th, 2015
6:30pm Slosberg Recital Hall Lobby
Experience new technologies at the intersection of music, improvisation, play and learning with neuroscientist, musician and educator Eric Rosenbaum. He believes that everyone is creative, inventive, and imaginative. He believes that everyone can create the future and change the world. So he's dedicated his life to making easy-to-use invention kits.
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Guttmann’s Klezmer All Stars

Jim Guttmann: From Carnegie Hall to smoky dives, from the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam to legendary folk music venue Club Passim in Cambridge, Massachusetts, bassist Jim Guttmann has played everything from klezmer to classical — and most styles in between. In a remarkable career spanning more than 30 years, he’s performed with a myriad of groups including the Klezmer Conservatory Band, singers Eartha Kitt and Mark Murphy, the Really Eclectic String Quartet, blues masters Johnny Shines and James Cotton, the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, Texas swing legend Tiny Moore, new acoustic music guitar virtuoso Russ Barenberg, the Artie Shaw Orchestra, and many more. Whether he’s swinging a jazz tune, holding down the clave rhythm in an Afro-Cuban song, or nailing a lively sirba with a klezmer band, Guttmann plays with great warmth, sophistication, and flawless time.

In 2010, Guttmann released Bessarabian Breakdown, his first CD as a leader on Kleztone Records. Surrounding himself with current and former members of the KCB, as well as friends from throughout his career, he leads various ensembles through a program that reflects his many interests. More about Jim Guttmann

Michael McLaughlin pianist and accordionist, has been a part of the Boston Klezmer and Jewish music scene since 1995 as a performer, arranger and composer for The Shirim Klezmer Orchestra, and Naftule's Dream. Over the years he has worked with members of The Klezmer Conservatory Band, and The Klezmatics, while recently bringing Klezmer music to the New England region with Klezwoods and the Yaeko Miranda Quintet. Performances have included the Helsinki Klezmer Festival, the Berlin Jazz Festival, the Texaco Jazz Festival in NYC and the Ashkenaz New Jewish Music Festival. McLaughlin holds a D.M.A in Music Composition from the New England Conservatory (’09), a MA in Music Composition from Tufts University ('99), and a BM from Berklee College of Music ('93). He was a recipient of a Mass Cultural Council Artist Grant award in composition. ('01) His music can be heard on Tzadik Records, Newport Classics, Ryko Disc, Accurate Records and more. He directs the Tufts klezmer ensemble, The Jumbo Knish Factory and teaches courses in musicianship and theory. More about Michael McLaughlin

Mimi Rabson violinist, violist, composer and educator dubbed "...dazzling, violin phenom" by the Boston Globe, Mimi Rabson has distinguished herself as one of Boston's most creative and versatile musicians. She appears regularly in classical, jazz, Klezmer and other eclectic performances. She is a first-prize winner of the Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship in composition. Ms. Rabson was a founding member of the Klezmer Conservatory Band and appeared with Itzhak Perlman on the recording called “In the Fiddler’s House” and on “The Late Show with David Letterman". Ms. Rabson is a Stringletter Press composer and arranger providing many pieces for the String Charts catalogue. She is an Associate Professor at Berklee College of Music and a sought after clinician. “...one of the elite players on Boston’s jazz-world fusion scene.” – The Boston Phoenix More about Mimi Rabson

Grant Smith, drums and percussionist, has studied drumset with Alan Dawson, Arabic drums with Jamie Haddad, tabla with Shashi Nayak, Afro-Cuban percussion with Enrique Pla, and Handance with Glen Velez. The Boston Globe calls him a "brilliant improviser." The Boston Phoenix has noted his topflight "cross-genre" abilities. Others note his sunny disposition. Grant has toured extensively, including Thailand, Australia, and both Europes. He is also a part of many world music, jazz, classical, orthodox, deconstructed, and free projects. Theatre and dance credits include the American Repertory Theater's production of "The King Stag," featuring a solo multi-percussion score (with staging and costumes by Julie Taymor) and movement works with Shakti Smith, Jane Wang, and Liz Roncka as well as his own choreography known as hogginsho. Despite such high profile gigs as tympani with Itzhak Perlman, borscht drums with Joel Grey, and tabla with the Violent Femmes, Grant still insists that his biggest gig was the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade with Kermit the Frog and Big Bird. Fave color: green. Fave food: Jane's cookies. Vegetarian. More about Grant Smith

-Guttmann’s Klezmer All Stars Performs, Sat March 28th, 2015
7:00 pm at Slosberg Music Center
Brandeis University, Waltham, MA
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Peter Kalb

Peter R. Kalb is the Cynthia L. and Theodore S. Berenson Associate Professor of Contemporary Art at Brandeis University where he teaches modern and contemporary art history. His most recent publication is Art Since 1980: Charting the Contemporary, (Pearson and Laurence King: New York and London, 2013) which details the expanding contemporary art world from its New York explosion in the early 1980s to is global expanse in the 21st century. Before preparing Art Since 1980, he was the revising author of the Fifth Edition of H.H. Arnason History of Modern Art and the author of High Drama: The New York Cityscapes of Georgia O’Keeffe and Margaret Bourke-White. His scholarship addresses issues in twentieth and twenty-first century art and criticism and he serves as the Boston-based corresponding editor for Art in America. Current projects include a series of articles on the politics of representation as evident in the work of Andrea Bowers as well as writing on the innovative practice of bricolage in the work of Tom Sachs and the history of emergence in the contemporary art . More about Peter Kalb

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-Creativity, Learning and Improvisation
3pm Slosberg Recital Hall, Saturday, March 28th, 2015

What are the connections between creativity, learning and improvisation? That’s the subject of this panel discussion with Contemporary Art historian Peter Kalb, improvising musician and educator Tom Hall, movement specialist and theater educator Sarah Hickler, and neuroscientist Eric Rosenbaum from MIT MediaLab.

-Workshop: Perception and Expression
12:00 The Rose Art Museum, Sunday March 29th, 2015

This workshop begins with a talk by Contemporary and Modern Art historian and Brandeis Professor Peter Kalb
on our perception of art and awareness of our reactions to it, followed by the direct experience of viewing art currently on display in the Rose Art Museum, and ending with the improvised expression of our reactions, facilitated by improviser and educator Tom Hall.

Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Chris Gill

I am an improvisational action painter. My primary media is watercolor. I paint on large rolls of paper, which I sometime cut up later to make smaller paintings. I rarely touch a paintbrush to the paper, though I use one to splatter paint. Most of the time I spill, pour and drip paint on the paper from containers, and let the colors mix as I go along. I also use various imprinting techniques, whereby I fold and roll sections of the freshly painted paper onto itself, creating layered and textured effects. Each painting has a certain number of "movements" (actions) once the paint is on the roll. The movements involve me manipulating the color and composition of the painting, by various actions I make on the paper, such that I pull it, drip it, roll it etc.. The actions, though appearing impulsive, and having a random element to them, in terms of how the paint reacts to my movements of the paper, are a key to my process, which combines intention with spontaneity. I have found that too many actions will create a muddy and incoherent painting. I must be decisive and patient, such that the actions, though sometimes very physical and vigorous, are discretely and mindful achieved. By combining intentional and random elements in my process, my paintings ofter mirror the patterns of nature. My paintings are never purposely narrative, but sometimes look as if they were, due to this marriage of intention and the "randomness" of natural processes. I work fast and assertively. I am a drummer, and I work very rhythmically. I consider my work to be a kind of visual music. It is also a sort of birthing process, and I find great excitement and joy in the discovery aspect of how each painting, as a unique, almost organic creation, turns out.

By day I am a child and adolescent psychotherapist. I am married to the artist, Jane Goldman, and live in Somerville, MA. More about Chris Gill

-Chris Gill, Sunday March 29th, 2015
2:00 pm The Creative Process: Live Painting
Slosberg Music Center, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA
Accompanied by Dave Bryant (piano)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Lennie Peterson has devoted his life to art, music, and arts education. He has traveled the world as a visual artist, performer, conductor, arranger, producer, educator, and recording artist.

Lennie’s current exhibition of large 4’ X 8’ composer portraits, titled "Face To Face", is in its second year of display at the new Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in Boston, MA. His award-winning artwork has been featured in solo and group exhibitions in galleries throughout the United States including the Ceres Gallery in New York City, the Brenda Taylor Gallery, the Williamsburg Art and Historical Center in Brooklyn, and the Angel Orensanz Foundation Center for the Arts in Manhattan sponsored by New York University's Institute for Humanities and The Knights, New York City's premier innovative chamber orchestra.

Lennie Peterson's art has been purchased around the world including private collections in the U.S., Spain, Wales, and Japan.

His internationally syndicated daily comic strip, "The Big Picture", appeared in more than 70 newspapers and was published as a book collection by Andrews/McMeel Publishing. The comic strip is currently in reruns on the syndicate's website, GoComics.com. He has illustrated 12 books, most recently a children's book by Monica Mansfield, "When You Have to Say Goodbye". By special request of talk show host Larry King, Lennie's work also appears in King's book "Remember Me When I'm Gone."

In addition to his love of visual art, Lennie is a professional musician and educator. He was Assistant Professor of Arranging, Composition, and Performance at Berklee College of Music where he created and developed new courses and instituted programs that remain in the Berklee curriculum to this day. After ten years at the college, he took leave to further establish his career in the Arts as an educator, visual artist, performer, band leader, composer, arranger, conductor, recording artist, and producer. He works in a wide variety of musical genres and settings including jazz, rock, Latin, and classical. Lennie has served as a creative consultant and music director for film and audio recordings and he also keeps a busy schedule as a singer and pianist.

As well, he tours as first trombonist with Grammy winning composer Osvaldo Golijov’s “La Pasión según San Marcos”, performing with some of the world’s most renowned symphony orchestras and in the great concert halls of the world. Lennie appears on the 2009 international DVD and CD release of “La Pasión”, filmed and recorded in Holland and performed at New York’s Carnegie Hall in March, 2013. The concert was broadcast nationally on NPR radio.

As a public speaker, Lennie has presented to audiences around the world from public and private grade schools to colleges, universities, and corporate gatherings including Harvard University, McNally Smith College, Colubris Technologies, EMC Corporation, and The Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. His presentations feature the creation of one of his large composer portraits in front of his audience while accompanied by live music. His interactive discussion focuses on the common traits of history's great iconic Creative Genius and Lennie helps his audience members realize those commonalities, encouraging them to assimilate those traits for a richer, more creative life experience.

He also creates contemporary portraits and portrait projections for music festivals, concerts, public art, and corporate-sponsored events. Lennie is available for seminars and classes to discuss his work and the exploration of creative process, motivating people from all walks of life to explore their own personal artistic outlets.

He donates a part of all proceeds earned from his workshops and print sales to Why Me, Inc, a certified agency of the United Way, helping children with cancer and their families (http://wwww.whyme.org). Lennie’s proceeds are earmarked specifically toward the purchase of concert tickets, musical instruments, and art supplies for children with cancer on their physical and emotional path to healing with the aid of the Arts and the creative process.

Lennie Peterson was born and raised in Central Massachusetts. His father is a musician and his late mother was an artist. He currently resides in a coastal community south of Boston, Massachusetts More about Lennie Peterson

-The Sound Line, Friday, March 27, 2015
5pm Shapiro Campus Center
Lines on paper and musical lines join together to create magic in this multimedia event! Artist Lennie Peterson will create one of his large scale pen and ink portraits of a famous musician, accompanied by the improvised musical lines of saxophonist Tom Hall and bassist Marty Ballou.
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Cynthia Cohen

Cynthia Cohen is Director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts at Brandeis University. She leads action/reflection research projects, and writes and teaches about work at the nexus of the arts, culture, justice and peace. She directed the Brandeis University/Theatre Without Borders collaboration Acting Together, co-edited the Acting Together on the World Stage anthology and co-created the related documentary and toolkit. She directs ReCAST, Inc., a non-profit organization partnering with Brandeis and New Village Press on the dissemination of Acting Together resources.

Cohen has written extensively on the aesthetic and ethical dimensions of peacebuilding, including the chapters "Creative Approaches to Reconciliation" and "Engaging with the Arts to Promote Coexistence," and an online book "Working With Integrity: A Guidebook for Peacebuilders Asking Ethical Questions."

Cohen previously directed the international fellowship program Recasting Reconciliation through Culture and the Arts, which produced an anthology by that name. (Available at the virtual resource center.) She teaches at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Cohen was the founding director of the Oral History Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and has facilitated coexistence efforts involving participants from the Middle East, the United States, Central America, and Sri Lanka.

She holds a Ph.D. in education from the University of New Hampshire and a master's degree in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In addition, Dr. Cohen has worked as a dialogue facilitator with communities in the Middle East, Sri Lanka, Central America and the United States. Prior to her tenure at Brandeis, she directed a community-based, anti-racist oral history center in the Boston area. More about Cynthia Cohen

-Improvisation and Social Transformation
3pm Slosberg Recital Hall, Friday, March 27th, 2015
An open discussion exploring the relationship between improvisation and social transformation, with Tom Hall (author of “Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide”) who writes and teaches about improvisation, and Cindy Cohen (director of the Brandeis Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts), who writes and teaches about work at the nexus of the arts, culture, justice and peace.
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
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Marty Ballou

Marty Ballou (bassist ) was born in South Kingstown, RI. 7/8/1960. South Kingstown High School, class of 1978. Attended Northeastern University and University of Rhode Island. Studied theory and improvisation with Hal Crook, jazz guitar with Leo Amitrano, classical guitar with Vincent Fraioli and acoustic bass with John Lockwood. Started career in 1979. From 1986-1992, Marty performed worldwide with the vocal jazz group ìThe Ritzî. Gigs included the Fresno Jazz Festival, Helsinki Jazz Festival, Blue Note Jazz clubs in Tokyo, Fukuoka and New York City, as well as George Weinís Newport Jazz Festival in Japan, and several other venues throughout the U.S. and abroad. He appears on 6 recordings with the group. From 1992-1997, he was a member of Duke Robillard's Band, traveling in the US, Europe, Australia, and South America, performing over 200 dates a year and making several recordings. In 2002, he joined blues great John Hammondís ìWicked Grin Bandî, and did three recordings including "Push Comes to Shove" in 2007. In 2008, he joined Peter Wolf's "Midnight Travelers" and appears on the 2010 "Midnight Souvenirs" recording.

Some of his recordings include: ìThe Ritzî(The Ritz w/Frank Wess-1987). ìAlmost Blueî(The Ritz w/Clark Terry-1991). ìSpoon's Bluesî(Jimmy Witherspoon-1995). ìDukeís Bluesî(Duke Robillard-1996). "Rhythm and Bones"(Porky Cohen-1996). ìHootie's Jumpiní Bluesî(Jay McShann-1997). "There Goes The Neighborhood"(Roomful Of Blues-1998). "Sweet and Swingin`"(Sugar Ray Norcia-1998). ìConversations in Swing Guitarî(Duke Robillard and Herb Ellis-1999). "You Knock Me Out"(Sax Gordon-2000). "Homage"(Greg Piccolo-2001). "Blow Mr.Low"(Doug James-2001). "Down in the Mood Room"(Jerry Portnoy-2002). "Blues in My Heart"(Chris Flory-2003). "Intoxicated"(Thom Enright-2005). "Max Attack"(David Maxwell-2005). "Everything Is One"(Pete Francis-2006). "I Wanna Play"(Bill Harley-2007). "Tres Muse"(Dan Morretti-2009). "Comfort in the Static"(Kenny White-2010). Over the years he has performed with and been inspired and encouraged by the area’ s[New England] finest artists: Hal Crook, Gray Sargent, Dick Johnson, Art Pelosi, Ted Casher, Herb Pomeroy, Tony Zano, Paul Broadnax, Bob Gullotti, Paul Schmeling, Duke Levine, Bobby Keyes, to name a few.

Ballou says -“I have been a working musician for the last 35 years. I've devoted my creative energy to understanding and performing all styles of American music. Every day I learn something new and I am blessed with the privilege of sharing it.”

-April Hall Quintet, Friday, March 27th, 2015
9pm at Slosberg Music Cente
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-The Sound Line, Friday, March 27, 2015

5pm Shapiro Campus Center
Lines on paper and musical lines join together to create magic in this multimedia event! Artist Lennie Peterson will create one of his large scale pen and ink portraits of a famous musician, accompanied by the improvised musical lines of saxophonist Tom Hall and bassist Marty Ballou.
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Greg Kowalski

The work of digital media artist Greg Kowalski focuses on live video projections and the creation of digital images. He has projected for numerous sound artists using systems of his own design which allow him to create visuals using movement, objects and light. This ability to create images through performance is essential to his concept of live projection.

From 1997 to 2010 Greg was a member of Qfwfq Duo with sound artist Andrea Pensado. The duo's works were mainly concerned with sound/image/movement interaction and always had a strong "performatic" element.

He made his directorial debut in 2013 with Sarah Kane's "Crave". The production was selected in the 2014 International New York Fringe festival where it received the festival excellence award for directing. More about Greg Kowalski

-Brandeis Improv Festival Dance Party
8pm Slosberg Recital Hall, Saturday, March 28th, 2015

The Brandeis Improv Festival Dance Party brings you a mashup of dance music from the past, present and future. Featuring the old world grooves of Guttmann’s Klezmer All Stars, turntable innovators Mister Rourke and Axel Foley, and the Moroccan dosed dub-trance-electronica excursions of Club d’Elf; along with the live video art of Greg Kowalski, and special guest dancers.
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)
Tom Hall Free Improvisation: A Practical Guide ( Improvisation, Music, Jazz, Education, Improv Course, Workbook, Music Guide)