NuMuLu – New Music Louisville

New Music Louisville - NuMuLu
New Music Louisville – NuMuLu

I’ve started a website and facebook page that features new and experimental music in the Greater Louisville and Kentuckiana region.  Sometimes it’s difficult knowing what is actually happening around you unless you have some place that aggregates all the relevant activity, events, and people involved in it.

I had once tried this in Indianapolis while I was more active in that scene and had a website which also served as the digital presence for an experimental music festival, INDYtron, I had started there in 2003.  I let that domain go but have since archived some of that at at lonely facebook page.  I also have an archival facebook space for the Chello Shed (most active from 1996 to 2000) which was a space and events entity I used to produce a several dozens of events and performances.  That one has much more content, as I’ve slowly started digitizing programs, images, and audio/video for it.

With NuMuLu, I hope to take all that experience (there was tons of frustration involved with previous efforts) and tenacity (I dug up some of the most wonderful gems relating to experimental activity in the Indianapolis area, for example) and use the web spaces to let folks know what’s happeneing in this area–as well as what has happened in the area since the Louisville Orchestra had some international fame while it was doing the First Edition Records and the University of Louisville is host to one of the biggest prizes for composition, the Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition.

Now that I run my own New Music group, the Mothership Ensemble, in the area as well as a more experimental project, Camera Lucida, which uses interactive video in collaboration with dancers and movement artists, I figured it was time to bring all of this history together and show it side by side with such things as the Louisville Experimental Festival, the UofL New Music Festival, the New Music label at IU Southeast, New Dynamic Records, and other New Music and improvisation groups like Orchestra Enigamatic and Bone Crusher –with luck start getting some momentum for all of us!

The Mothership Has Landed!!

The Mothership Has Landed!!
The Mothership Has Landed!!

For the longest time I’ve wanted to start a Contemporary Music Ensemble and that dream has come to fruition.  While working on a number of occasions with a local composer, Rachel Short (a recent graduate of IUS), we’ve pulled together some resources and folks (as haphazardly as that might have happened) and concocted the Mothership Ensemble (the name which, as she said, “chose itself”).

I’ve talked with a number of local composers and musicians when i moved back to the Louisville Metro area about the idea of starting a New Music group, and ideas flew back and forth, but nothing really solidified.  Over the past year or so I’ve been Rachel’s works for various events and as well as her senior recital.  One piece of hers, Wormhole: Caesura (for voice and string trio), we’ve performed a number of times with pretty much the same line-up (with me on voice/cello).

Continue reading “The Mothership Has Landed!!”

Every arts organization has a deficit, NOT!

Michael Kaiser, in a blog about the Oregon Symphony, brings up an important point:

I am afraid NOT every arts organization has a deficit. That is simply not true. And it is dangerous logic.

This is a good counterpoint to the fact that not every popular entertainment institution is profitable or sustainable.  Until we can get past specific stereotypical qualities we attribute to arts organizations and popular music institutions, we’ll never be able to start seriously figuring out why some things work and why others don’t.

Since some of my colleagues in what used to be the Louisville Orchestra have been posting the Kaiser piece, I’ve been following pretty closely both sides of the musicians and management/board issue.  One thing I’ve noticed about management side of issues in orchestras, and this is related to my recent 10,000 hours or talent? blog post, is that there is often so much focus on the external reasons for deficits.  In this kind of thinking, the external environment is either impossible to change or very resistant to it.  There’s just no way to get more of an audience or more donors hence the organization needs to make cuts to be sustainable.  This is one other consequence of the Fundamental Attribution Error as I’ve discussed here. Continue reading “Every arts organization has a deficit, NOT!”