Posted in music | pictures on June 27, 2011

words & photos by Andrew Frisicano

"13 consecutive hours of experimental and avant-garde noodling" - NY Times on the Bang on a Can Marathon as quoted by Glenn Branca

Bang On A Can Marathon

The 2011 Bang on a Can Marathon went down on Sunday, June 19th, at the World Financial Center in NYC. As usual, a healthy contingent stayed for the duration (not me, I made it from around 5pm to the end). But even in just those last few hours there were some incredible performances. I caught Bang on a Can All-Stars playing with Philip Glass (who also opened with a solo performance of his "Metamorphosis IV"), a lively set from Sun Ra Arkestra, a show-stealing piece by Evan Ziporyn for himself and three other clarinetists, and a closing, full-on rock set by Glenn Branca Ensemble, who played from his album The Ascension: The Sequel.

Before that, Signal performed a droning, dramatic piece by BoaC cofounder Julia Wolfe, and Talea Ensemble and soprano Tony Arnold lead the NY premiere "An Index of Metals" by Fausto Romitelli, which tapped a laptop for atmospherics that bounced around the room's different speakers. Asphalt Orchestra similarly made good use of the Winter Garden space, marching around various quadrants of the room (and starting off the day with an outdoor performance). As you'll see in the pictures below, the Sun Ra Arkestra also made their way around the room, leaving the stage in a procession to the back.

As with past years, the Winter Garden was an adequate but not ideal venue. The sound could vary dramatically in different corners of the massive room, from bone dry in front of the stage to an echoey wash-out in the wings and the back (most noticeable when a speaker takes the mic, and is unintelligible from various vantage points). At the same time, the open space encourages the concert's free-flowing, low-pressure atmosphere, which is a huge part of its recurring appeal.

More pictures from the day, and a couple of videos, below...

--

Asphalt Orchestra at Bang on Can 2011 Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Asphalt Orchestra

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Talea Ensemble with Tony Arnold

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

(a sign on the squeaky door that led outsetÉ)
Bang On A Can Marathon

Signal

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Toby Twining
Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang on a Can All-Stars w/ Philip Glass
Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Sun Ra Arkestra

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

BoaC cofounder David Lang & Evan Ziporyn
Bang On A Can Marathon

Evan Ziporyn, Carol McGonnell, Joshua Rubin and Michael Lowenstern
Bang On A Can Marathon

BoaC cofounder Michael Gordon
Bang On A Can Marathon

Glenn Branca Ensemble
Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

Bang On A Can Marathon

(The Cantaloupe Records cantaloupeÉ)
Bang On A Can Marathon

Todd Reynolds performs Transamerica at the Bang on a Can Marathon 2011

Bang on a Can All-Stars with Philip Glass - Music in Similar Motion (Live at BoaC Marathon 6-19-11)

Talea Ensemble in Fausto Romitelli's An Index of Metals (excerpt) at Bang on a Can Marathon 2011

Toby Twining at the Bang on a Can Marathon 2011

---

      

Comments (29)

Music so "complex" and "thought provoking" that only people who have an intellectual complex could enjoy...

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 9:51 AM

Gleen Branca's piece was incredible....

I had to laugh at some people covering their ears because it was so loud!

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:04 AM

I just know that Phillip Glass has banged a few cans in his time.

Posted by Stonewall Steve | June 27, 2011 10:18 AM

@10:04, yeah, you don't sound phony at all.
mash-on-a-chickpea marathon.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:21 AM

mash on a chickpea....1st step in making hummus

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:39 AM

put on debut album by cults.... 2nd step to making hummus

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:44 AM

Stonewall Steve: Zing! + better than any douchenozzle hummus joke that could be crafted here.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:47 AM

@1021/1039/1044 = same person making silly hummus comments like we care about cheap ass food you eat.

Go listen to better music and eat better food or move back to your parent's house back in Ohio.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:48 AM

I am only 10:39, not the other commenters. I live in a major city (not in Ohio) and think you are ridiculously lame for caring enough to comment about something you are bothered by....from anonymous people. #sad #patheticboy

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 10:59 AM

Yea cause talking about hummus on bang on a can review is totally approtiate and not pathetic right? If you wanna go talk about your hummus, go to hummus.com or some food network shit.

Get a life hipster! Go back to wherever you came from.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:03 AM

I'm 10:44 and agree with 10:59. If you come to a comment board expecting to read scripture or to engage in earth shattering intellectual discourse, then you clearly have been living under a rock about the reality of the Internet since it came into being.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:04 AM

gentlemen, gentlemen, let's not argue over whether a name ... it is called both a chick pea and a garbonzo bean, and you can use Goya or one of many other brands. We can also discuss - politely - whether the finished product is actually a legume or not. But one thing we can all agree on ... that that special paste is best enjoyed fresh, and with a breath mint afterwards. now, go in peace.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:06 AM

The fact that you listen to Cults is pathetic.

You probably never even heard of Glenn Branca, Philip Glass, and etc hahahha

Go enjoy your shitty music every day.

and keep thinking hummus tastes great hahahha.

Dumbass.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:06 AM

It's really hard to tell which angry comments are coming from Todd P or Ted Leo these days.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:10 AM

Hummus does taste great
and I listen to both Phillip Glass and Glenn Branca
Can you accept the fact that you are so wrong, so fat, and so ... oh, forget it. you're not worth the characters.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:12 AM

Ok hipster 1112am.

You're cool dude.

You eat hummus.

You listen to the Cults.

You listne to Mr. Glass and Mr. Branca.

Now why don't you donate your hummus products to the homeless or do something productive with your life.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:18 AM

If someone tells me I listen to Cults and Philip Glass, I would seriously think they're retarded and tell them to get their ears checked.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:25 AM

Hey asswipe 11:18 - I guarantee that I make more money than you, have better taste in music than you, and have a bigger cock as well. Go home

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:26 AM

11:26, how much, favorite three bands and how big?

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:35 AM

11:35 - you first, you're the one ranking on everyone's comments here.
if you have the cajones, that is

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 11:50 AM

OK I'll bite, 11:50am

$88k (should be more next week after I receive my promotion)
Sonic Youth, Stooges and The Replacements
8.25" x 6"

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 12:13 PM

re 12:25: "If someone tells me I listen to Cults and Philip Glass, I would seriously think they're retarded and tell them to get their ears checked."

Your grammar is atrocious.

Seriously, I think that you may be mentally deficient, possibly schizophrenic (being unable to distinguish between the first and third person).

You should get your head checked.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 12:16 PM

"gentlemen, gentlemen, let's not argue over whether a name ... it is called both a chick pea and a garbonzo bean, and you can use Goya or one of many other brands. We can also discuss - politely - whether the finished product is actually a legume or not. But one thing we can all agree on ... that that special paste is best enjoyed fresh, and with a breath mint afterwards. now, go in peace."

I'VE.... GOT.............. CUM!

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 12:19 PM

12:16pm. You should go get a job as a teacher.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 12:34 PM

The silence on the end of 11:26 has me assuming he got outmeasured by 12:13pm.

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 1:45 PM

Ofcourse 1126 just wants to talk about hummus and his pathetic life as a trust fund hipster.

Go away hipster! and listen to more Cults. I hear they're the next big thing!

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 2:06 PM

Kind of weird seeing coverage of glenn branca (ect.) on here, doesn't seem like people reading BV would have the patience for this stuff

Posted by Anonymous | June 27, 2011 3:32 PM

1) hummus is fucking good
2) Todd P and Ted Leo are worthless douchebags who should be shit upon
3) Bang on a Can lineup was fun, but sound was absolute shit unless you got there early enough to grab a seat up front. i didn't. i was excited to see phillip glass and sun ra arkestra, but both sounded like indistinguishable muddling. nothing to do with the playing, the acoustics just really suck nuts in there. the absolute dumbest place ever to have a musical performance.
4) Branca Ensemble wasn't really all that loud, the people who covered their ears were just total pussies. they were good though.

Posted by Anonymous | June 28, 2011 7:48 PM

5) cults... eh... they're ok. nothing to be excited (or really angry/snobby) about. nothing special. move along.

Posted by Anonymous | June 28, 2011 7:49 PM

Leave a Comment