May 14: Tatsuya Nakatani, Degradient, Sharon Tate Fetus Explosion

Tatsuya Nakatani:::::::
Tatsuya Nakatani is an avant-garde sound artist, composer, and master percussionist originally from Osaka, Japan. Based in the USA since 1994, he lives in Truth or Consequences, NM. Since the late 1990’s, Nakatani has released over 80 recordings in the USA and Europe and has toured extensively; performing solo, in collaboration with other artists, and with his large ensemble project – the Nakatani Gong Orchestra. He presents masterclasses, workshops, and lectures across the USA and around the world.

Sharon Tate Fetus Explosion::::::::
Sharon Tate Fetus Explosion is currently a solo project of Sarah Lockhart. No Wave-inspired, post-industrial, art-damaged, and generally damaged. Huddling under the noise umbrella, some of STFE’s material is songs with words. Instrumentation includes metal percussion, electronics, and vocals. Content includes: real estate development, social media trends, normcore, and the inner lives of domestic animals.

Kyle Bruckmann’s Degradient::::::
After 13 busy years maintaining poly-stylistic sideman duties and long-distance collaborations with former Chicago comrades, Bruckmann finally busts out as bandleader of a Bay Area ensemble. Gleefully colliding elements of skronk, fried analog noise and dark prog within a Creative Music framework, DEGRADIENT adds a significant chunk of heavy to his signature gimmicks of jittery polyrhythmic clatter, formal complexity, black humor, and all-around sensory overload. The core quartet features fellow Chicago ex-pat Aram Shelton along with the in-demand rhythm section (currently driving groups including Jack O’ the Clock and the Fred Frith Trio) of Jason Hoopes and Jordan Glenn.

$5 – $15 sliding scale
21+ | wheelchair accessible

4/9: Joel Nelson/Amplified Glass, Apropos Trio (Renzi-Mezzacappa-Levis), & Trouble Ensemble

Originally from the Birmingham, Alabama area, Joel Nelson moved to Oakland, California in 2016. After attending Mills College he began learning about supercollider and its effects through transducers on glass. The performance will be a demonstration of the work so far on this project.

Matt Renzi – clarinet, oboe, tenor sax
Lisa Mezzacappa – acoustic bass
Jason Levis – drums

Rent Romus, Joshua Marshall: saxophones
Jakob Pek: guitar
Tim DeCillis: vibraphone
Andrew Jamieson: keyboard
Chris Lauf: drums
Ernest Larkins: voice
The spirituals illuminate the spiritual force that troubles the waters of injustice and oppression using the power of African and African American music and spirituality. Originally songs of black American slaves, they are rooted in song, dance and drumming of West Africa, the experience of oppression of an uprooted people, and the teachings of a transformative faith. They troubled the dominant narratives, and their message and tradition continue to trouble unjust systems today. Composers and experimenters (like Sun Ra, Charles Ives and Pauline Oliveros) troubled the musical establishment and its conventions as they envisioned radical new ways of making and listening to sound. Their traditions are a separate musical “voice” from African American spirituality and the two voices cannot merge into one. Instead, they must converse. Listen to one another. Learn from one another. Discover harmony. Enjoy dissonance. Each with our own distinct voices, we create, listen to, revere and question, the melody, rhythm and text derived from spirituals, and other songs they inspired, we revel in our own ways of enjoying, discovering and making

Mar 12: KREation Ensemble, Dunkelman/Fluke-Mogul/Nishi-Smith, & John Bischoff

John Bischoff will perform a short set of two or three electronic works. The pieces will incorporate custom analog circuits constructed by the composer in sonic exchange with laptop sound synthesis in striking modes of symbiosis.


Nava Dunkelman is a Bay Area based percussionist and improviser. Born in Tokyo, Japan and raised in a multi-cultural environment by an American father and Indonesian mother. Her musical interests span the globe from Japanese taiko to Indonesian gamelan to American marching band, and from classical to contemporary to the avant-garde. Nava studied percussion under Eugene Novotney at Humboldt State University before attending Mills College, where she graduated with a degree in music performance in 2013 and studied with William Winant, Fred Frith, Maggi Payne, Zeena Parkins, and David Bernstein.
She has performed and collaborated with William Winant, Fred Frith, John Zorn, Ikue Mori, George Lewis, Matmos and many others. She has performed classical and contemporary pieces with the William Winant Percussion Group, Joan Jeanrenaud, San Francisco Girls Chorus, San Francisco Contemporary Music Players and others.
She also formed electro-percussion experimental noise duo IMA, and improvisational duo DunkelpeK.
Nava enjoys discovering her own musical language by exploring experimental approaches to communication, progression and space.

gabby fluke-mogul is a violinist, improviser, composer, & educator living in Oakland, CA. gabby explores the depths, infinite sounds, hues, & multitudinous voices of the acoustic violin. through improvising//composing, gfm hopes to create space for individual & collective intersectional process, intimacy, & vulnerability. they are interested in the sensual nature of sound—how desire & eroticism are embodied & translated within the political & poetic context(s) of improvisation.
​gabby holds a BA from Hampshire College (Amherst, MA) in Music & Critical Studies of Childhood, Youth, and Learning where they studied with Rachel Conrad, Marty Ehrlich, Jamie MacDonald, Dan Warner, & Becky Miller and a MFA in Music Performance and Literature with Improvisation Specialization from Mills College (Oakland, CA) where they worked with Pauline Oliveros, Jennifer Wilsey, Zeena Parkins, India Cooke, Fred Frith, Roscoe Mitchell, Kala Ramnath, W.A. Mathieu, & Kara Davis. gabby will complete Pauline Oliveros’s Deep Listening Certificate Program in December 2018.
gabby believes in the power of listening, improvisation, babies, children, & kindness. gfm performs with a variety of ensembles & collaborative projects in addition to facilitating community-based workshops & teaching (toddlers-adults) in public, private, & non-profit learning spaces.

Kanoko Nishi-Smith is a performer currently based in SF/Bay Area. Though classically trained on piano, receiving a BA in Classical Music Performance from Mills College, her recent interest has primarily been in performing 20th century and contemporary musical compositions for piano as well as for koto (Japanese 13-string zither), and free-improvisation in various different contexts, with musicians, as well as dancers, poets,
and visual artists.


KREation Ensemble::::
Steeped in the study of the powers of vibration, KREation is lead by Baltimore native saxophonist/composer Kevin Robinson. Formed in 2003. The group performs in a variety of instrumentation and configurations- from a 12 piece band to a quartet, trios, duets to solo etc. The group has performed at various festivals, jazz clubs, concert venues and art galleries throughout the US.

Presenting a sonic meditation based on a labyrinth of sound worlds:

Kevin Robinson – Woodwinds
Kanoko Nishi-Smith – Koto
Lee Hodel – Bass,
Tony Gennaro – Percussion
Golnaz Shariatzadeh – Violin

Links to hear and see music.
KREation Ensemble at Outsound Festival – Video

Interview with Yale Radio

Jan 8: OMMO, Pearce/Stewart-Robertson, & Force/Keenan/Russell/Tambellini

Julie Moon & Adria Otte’s OMMO began in 2014 as a platform to investigate the complexities and histories of the Korean diaspora and their places within it. The duo’s unique compositions may be experienced as evocative, atmospheric soundscapes which create an abstract yet fertile space for these investigations. Configurations of voice, analog and digital electronics, free and structured improvisations, as well as theater, ritual and song, may all be employed in the process.

Daniel Pearce & Owen Stewart-Robertson
In their duo, guitarist Owen Stewart-Robertson and drummer Daniel Pearce produce a gentle improvised music that thinks hard against itself, second-guessing its own tonality and rhythm and palette, neither fully failing nor fully succeeding to break through into that which it seeks. Folk melodies run through a humming refrigerator, chopped-and-unscrewed back-porch tunes, fastidious recreations of the lonely music heard by a deep-sea diver, etc.

Force/Keenan/Russell/Tambellini form a quartet comprised of violin, bass guitar, percussion and trumpet (respectively). The four musicians met during their time studying at Mills College in Oakland. Through various compositional prompts, the group improvises in unforeseen ways.

$5 – $15 sliding scale
21+ | wheelchair accessible

Dec 11: Monopiece, Jungle Junk, & Alex Cohen

Active Music Series presents:
– Monopiece (Nathan Corder, Timothy Russell, Matt Robidoux, Danishta Rivero)
– Jungle Junk
– Alex Cohen

Monopiece (Nathan Corder, Timothy Russell, Matt Robidoux) formed at Mills College, Oakland, CA in Roscoe Mitchell’s improvisation workshop in 2017. Monopiece performances are frequently an occasion to collaborate with an additional member, forming a quartet. For this Active Music Series concert we are honored to be joined by vocalist / electronic musician and sound artist Danishta Rivero of Las Sucias and Voicehandler.

The dopest opus from Alexandra Buschman (Demonsleeper, Las Sucias). In 1999, she formed the electro-acoustic group, Synethesia, together with Angélica Negrón. After scaring the daylights out of everyone at the Conservatory of Music in Puerto Rico, she matriculated to Mills College before committing to advanced studies in sub-tableau tangles of copper crawling with electrons.

Alex Cohen is an American Guitarist and Performance Artist. He will be premiering the second iteration of Tractus Apocalypsis, a new series of performances conceived for the Guitar.
$5 – $15 sliding scale
21+ | wheelchair accessible

Nov 13: Tom Weeks’ Ero Guro, Headlights (Aurora Josephson + Headboggle), and Li & AM (Lisa E. Harris and Amy Melissa Reed) –

Ero Guro

Ero Guro is a compositional/performance outlet for the music of Oakland composer, improviser, and saxophonist Tom Weeks. The band focuses on extreme music, drawing from various African American musical traditions, the historical avant-garde, and the heavy metal and hardcore traditions, taking inspiration from sources ranging from transgressive Japanese art aesthetics to ancient Scandinavian literature. Ero Guro has recorded two full length records: the self-titled Ero Guro (2015), and Blood of The Wolf (2017), both released through Weeks’ own Wolfsblood label.

Tom Weeks – Alto Saxophone and Compositions
Mike Srouji – Electric Bass
Robbie Pruett – Drum Set
Patrick Talesfore, Jr. – Drum Set

Li & AM

theremin, guitar, objects, sound, voice, image
New work by Lisa E. Harris and Amy Melissa Reed

“Today I specialize in creating original theories involving experimental composition, vocal and human performance, film, sound art and installation, that consider the energetic relationships between body, spirit, land, and space. If these experiences are healing in some way, all the better. I believe in fun, freedom, and feeling good. I hope my work can inspire reconciliation of the past by generating a whole heap of new sense memories, that we may enjoy a balanced present day.” – Lisa E.

Lisa E. Harris (1981)
Lisa E. Harris, Li, is an interdisciplinary artist, performer and composer from Houston Texas, USA. Li is a trained classical voice/opera singer from Manhattan School of Music and is certified as a facilitator of DEEP LISTENING, the sonic philosophies of composer Pauline Oliveros, from the Rensellaer Polytechnic Institute. Li’s work focuses on the energetic relationships between body, land, spirit and place. She uses voice, theremin, movement, text and new media to explore healing in performance.
Recent Work includes:’ “House of Practice” at Project Row Houses, Huston, TX a holistic recreation center that creates a sacred space and a healing environment through the use of cool colors, calming and orderly interiors, mirrors, furniture, literature and a practitioner. The installation offers organic practices, materials, and information as alternatives to overindulgence in pharmaceutical consumption and digital recreation.
“The Force of Things”: An opera for objects by Ashley Fure and “The Nubian Word For Flowers” A phantom opera by Pauline Oliveros and IONE

Amy Melissa Reed
Director at Ma Series Arts
Amy Melissa Reed is a visual artist and improviser creating new sonic language for guitar, exploring the spontaneous possibilities of song, and researching the composer’s relationship to dreaming, storytelling, and listening. They create visual and sonic work that remembers the healing forces of the earth and our bodies. They compose for solo and ensemble.
They curate Ma Series and focus their time and energies to build an international community of women composers and improvisers who support each other and the research, practice, and performance of experimental, healing, and adventurous sonic work.

Aurora Josephson/Headboggle

Aurora Josephson (voice & percussion) and Derek Gedalecia (electronics & instruments) perform original and classic compositions across the spectrum.

Using extended techniques and elaborate backing, each performance is presented with the particular audience and venue in mind. Join us on this trip.

$5 – $15 sliding scale
21+ | wheelchair accessible

October 9: alex cruse, Voicebox, & Cilla Vee with local improvisers

PERFORMANCE with Cilla Vee (north carolina) and local improvisers
Cilla Vee / Claire Elizabeth Barratt – dance
kyle bruckmann – oboe, english horn
david boyce – electronics
angela edwards (sharkiface) – electronics
phillip greenlief – tenor saxophone
jacob felix heule – percussion
aurora josephson – voice
crystal pascucci – cello

Claire Elizabeth Barratt (aka Cilla Vee) is an interdisciplinary artist with a performing arts background. She is the director of Cilla Vee Life Arts – an arts organization with a focus on cross-media collaboration. Her work utilizes artistic disciplines of dance, music, text, media, visual and installation art. She has presented her work in venues as diverse as Jacob’s Pillow, the New York Botanical Gardens, Black Mountain College Museum + Art Center and Art Basel Miami. She has performed and taught throughout the USA, Canada, Europe, Japan and Pakistan.

alex cruse is a writer, artist, and curator based in Oakland. cruse has performed and exhibited nationally and abroad, often as DROUGHT SPA (with Kevin CK Lo.) She is the author of CONTRAVERSE (Timeless, Infinite Light, 2017).

Voicebox is an electronic music duo formed by Oakland based musicians Dylan Burchett and Rodolfo Córdova. The duo combines elements of improvisation, chance, timbral, vocal and modular electronic music in an attempt to explore the liminal space between musician and composer, human and machine. Their performances combine a multi-faceted approach to music making, often employing a wide range of skills as instrumentalists, recordists, and writers.

Sep 11: DunkelpeK; Nurse Betty; & gabby fluke-mogul, David Lechuga-Espadas, Patrick Talesfore, Jr., Tom Weeks

Nurse Betty is a noise experiment by Dianne Lynn of FootSOS, Homoglochini, Weird Ear Records, and Life Changing Ministry. Born of curiosity for the art of noise and inspired by concepts and processes in life science such as circulation, osmosis, pressure, and release, her modular synths, sequencers, and field recordings culminate a visceral collage of equilibrium and agitation. Nurse Betty is influenced by friends and artists of the Bay Area noise scene. Dianne Lynn, with her partner Raub Roy, founded Weird Ear Records (2011), a record label reveling in disparate forms of experimental music. Their slogan, “The Weird Ear, The Better,” serves as a guideline to the curatorial themes across all of these projects.

DunkelpeK is Japanese born percussionist Nava Dunkelman and Canadian American guitarist Jakob Pek. This iconoclastic duo creates an experimental, improvised, exploratory music that reimagines the possibilities of the duet. Visceral, organic, and spontaneous in nature, DunkelpeK’s sound transfigures and hybridizes many musics, offering listeners a holistic exploration into the very essence of musical experience.


An improvising quartet featuring violinist gabby fluke-mogul, guitarist David Lechuga-Espadas, drummer Patrick Talesfore, Jr. and saxophonist Tom Weeks.

Aug 14: Kim Nucci, Key West, & Kasey Knudsen Trio

Kim Nucci:
Kim Nucci (OAK) is a multi-media artist, composer/improviser and technologist. They perform on saxophone, electronics, voice and live projection. Their research interests most recently are exploring the pedestrian cybernetic body through critically examining our relationship with technology and with our instruments. The are also invested in the exploration of ritualism and trance states in improvisation. They hold an MFA in Electronic Music and Recording Media, an MA in Music Composition from Mills College, a BA in Visual Arts from Bennington College. They were awarded a full scholarship at ACRE residency in 2017 where they studied modular synthesis, video, photo-telemetry and other emerging technologies. They currently teach courses in electronic music at California Jazz Conservatory.
Key West:
Key West is an improvised free jazz trio with a strong emphasis on energy. Brian Pedersen started the group in 2000, and over the years it became a sort of free jazz collective. There was a revolving cast of musicians and performances could range anywhere from a duo to an octet. In 2016 the decision was made to reduce the unit to a core trio. Brian Pedersen (Fistortion, Dancin’ Baby, Hummel), Jay Korber (Burmese, Ettrick, Murder Murder), Randylee Sutherland (Love Chains, Nuclear Death Wish, Santorum).
Brian Pedersen-sax
Jay Korber-drums
Randylee Sutherland-cello
Kasey Knudsen Trio:
After nearly a decade of playing together in a variety of contexts, saxophonist Kasey Knudsen, bassist Miles Wick and drummer Jon Arkin unite as a trio to delve into the limitless possibilities of this pared down configuration. The group will explore a diverse array of original compositions, freely improvised vignettes and a few choice standards to create a sound that is identifiable, at times abstract, but always immediately accessible.

July 10: Aram Shelton / Jacob Felix Heule duo, Nathan Clevenger’s Ashen Cleric, & Shatter Pattern (Waxy Tomb)

Shatter Pattern
Currently growing offshoot-outgrowth-offspring of the Bay Area-based Waxy Tomb project, Shatter Pattern reallocates the memory space activated during dreams in hopes of generating a shared access platform for reoccurring movement practices that can slow down and speed up time.
Ashen Cleric plays ominous nondenominational chamber music, presented in suites of long-form, modular pieces that continually blur the line between composition and improvisation. The music obliquely draws upon — and sometimes recklessly disfigures — religious themed music of the world. The latest project of Oakland composer Nathan Clevenger, Ashen Cleric features Crystal Pascucci (cello), Cory Wright (tenor sax/alto flute), Jordan Glenn (drums/accordion), and Tim DeCillis (vibes/percussion).
Jacob Felix Heule is an improvising percussionist with a special interest in friction techniques. His music is shaped by intuition, listening, and following where the sounds lead. He embraces limited instrumentation – like a single drum and a single cymbal – as a commitment to exploring the depth of his instruments.
Aram Shelton is an improviser and composer who performs on saxophone, clarinets, and live electronics. He plays with a distinct, harmonically rich sound and develops musical thoughts through constant motion, tonal shifts and complex sounds alongside clear melodic and rhythmic constructs. His vocabulary utilizes the range of extended techniques including multiphonics and harmonics, circular breathing, wind sounds and an exploration of the outer ranges of the instrument. Shelton focuses on creative music grounded in and influenced by the rich history of avant-jazz and free improvisation; his writing and playing has been documented through more than two dozen albums to date. He’s been an integral member of the creative music communities in the Bay Area and Chicago, has been living in Copenhagen since 2016 and is moving to Budapest in the fall.