27 January 2024 Saturday 2-3:30pm
£5 | 12 places only | Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for tickets
A talk by experienced improviser Caroline Kraabel
Exploring her own practice, along with a wider view of improvisation and identity: even the world of freely improvised music can be experienced as an enclave that excludes, despite the perceived association of improvisation with limitlessness and freedom.
How do people who improvise feel and think DIFFERENTLY from each other on the subject? How do we avoid or alter any dominance of particular groups over the theory or practice of improvisation? Does the experimental nature of improvisation make it easier for members of élites to shine in the field, because they have more pre-existing socio-cultural capital? Or, does improvisation come more easily for outsiders who are already primed to find alternative paths? How are improvisers affected by their musical and cultural histories? How does a group, maybe a large group, of improvisers negotiate space and time, noise and silence in a musical and just way?
For improvisers who have experienced forms of oppression in music making and/or life, is the aim when making music merely to recapitulate existing power structures, but try to place themselves at the top? Or to create new and fairer structures?
References: Gittin’ To Know Y’all: Improvised Music, Interculturalism, and the Racial Imagination, by George E. Lewis, Columbia University
Naked Intimacy: Eroticism, Improvisation, and Gender, by Ellen Waterman, University of Guelph
Caroline Kraabel is a London-based improviser, saxophonist, artist, conductor, and composer.
In 2022 Kraabel founded a large improvising group made up of all sorts of women, non-binary, and transgender improvisers: ONe_Orchestra New. (https://oneorchestranew.com/)