Ten artists. Ten hours. Four new works. That’s how October 4 will proceed at EMPAC if you do the numbers. For this special, all-day festival of newly commissioned work, audiences will be treated to four boundary-pushing performances.
At 4 p.m., Temporary Distortion (pictured above) begins a six-hour performance, “My Voice Has An Echo In It,” combining live music, text, and video in a fully enclosed 24-foot by 6-foot capsule made of two-way mirrors. All performers are completely confined within this freestanding, soundproof box while the audience watches and listens from outside, challenging the social conventions of the live concert experience.
At 4:30 and 7:30 p.m., Anthony Marcellini performs “Obsolescere: The Thing is Falling.” Over the course of 25 minutes, a house cat, a Ford Taurus, seven fluorescent light bulbs, a goldfish, several cornstalks, the Encyclopedia Britannica, and a rusted portrait bust will narrate a series of conversations addressing the condition of all objects, humans included, when they outlive their usefulness.
At 6:30 and 8 p.m., audience members will board a bus for Aaron Landsman and Brent Green’s “Empathy School,” an immersive and participatory performance riding through the post-industrial landscape surrounding Troy. The piece will mix narrative with an ambient score that responds to the movement of the bus, subtly changing with shifts in speed and direction.
Finally, at 9 p.m., Mick Barr presents a solo performance of his electric guitar works. A guitarist of the highest technical caliber, Barr makes music that exists somewhere between progressive black metal, hardcore, and avant-jazz and is central to the extreme sound scene.