Open Waters Festival of New and Improvised Music

Dalhousie Arts Centre and Atlantica Hotel Commons Room
Friday, January 9, 2015 - 7:30pm to Saturday, January 10, 2015 - 7:30pm
Festival pass $40.00 for adults and $35 for seniors and students. Single entrance either night $20. Upstream membership discount $5.00

Purchase your Festival Pass or Individual Tickets on PayPal! Discount of $5.00 for Symphony New Music patrons and Upstream members.

Festival Passes

Please call Alanna Griffin at (902) 266-2639 for further information.

On January 9 and 10, choose from twelve extraordinary events at two Halifax locations: the Sir James Dunn Theatre at the Dalhousie Arts Centre and the Commons Room in the Atlantica Hotel.

The Open Waters Festival of new and improvised music features two days of creative ensembles mixing experimental, jazz and classical genres from Atlantic Canada and beyond. This year we are bringing together collaborations with visiting artists from Quebec, Newfoundland and New York City. We are delighted that American saxophonist Joe McPhee will join Free Delivery in a guest spot on Saturday night.

We also welcome Symphony Nova Scotia’s whose concerts bookend our festival this year with world premieres by Montreal's Tim Brady (January 8th) and Halifax's Jerome Blais (January 13th).

See the Festival Schedule below.

Friday, January 9
Saturday, January 10 - Afternoon
Saturday, January 10 - Evening
Thursday, January 8 and Tuesday, January 13

Festival Schedule

Friday, January 9, 2015 - Alternating Currents

7:30 PM at the Sir James Dunn Theatre, Dalhousie Arts Centre
The festival kicks off with five amazing performances at the Dunn

7:30 PM

Tim Crofts
Tim Crofts is an improvising pianist combining elements from classical music, jazz and world music.  Prepared piano has been an area of interest for him for many years. Crofts uses magnets, billiard balls, chains, and other devices to coax a wide spectrum of timbres from the piano and combines them in a free improvised format.

8:15 PM

Norm Adams and Ellen Waterman 
suddenlyLISTEN presents a new musical conversation from the East and Far East (St. John's)! Listening and sounding that inspires and enlivens. This event provides the audience with a tapestry of harmony and melody, in which the colours complement one another at times, but can also clash, changing the picture entirely! The fun is found in the enjoyment of the changes.

9:00 PM

The Subscription Opus Duo
From St. John’s, the Subscription Opus Duo is percussionist/assistant vocalist Mack Furlong and soundsinger Chris Tonelli. Subscription Opus Duo formed to interpret and perform the mail art scores of San Diego’s Jude Weirmeir and his Subscription Opus series.  Their realizations of these works blend voice and percussion, striving to break down the wall between the spaces of performance and non-performance.  For Tonelli & Furlong, Weirmeir’s pieces are glorious improvisation partners, maps to a better present.

subSet: Steven Naylor & Jeff Reilly
subSet is an improvised duo performance by Steven Naylor (piano, seljefløyte, electronics) and Jeff Reilly (bass clarinet). Jeff and Steven have performed and recorded together for nearly 25 years. In creating their performances, Naylor and Reilly work from materials that range from conceptual ideas, to simple musical elements, to through-composed structures for improvisation. To each performance, they bring a wide and eclectic musical vocabulary, a deep interest in sonic exploration, and a profound respect for the art of listening.

Following subSet's performance, Opus Duo and subSet will become a quartet to complete this improvisational exploration.

10:00 PM

Night Coast Music with spontaneous elctro-acoustic composition
Geordie Haley (guitar/efx), Lukas Pearse (bass/efx) , Norm Adams (cello/efx ) and Darcy Gray (percussion/efx). With a century of new and improvised music making between them the Night Coast Music Quartet will share their sounds, grown from the many fields of contemporary music they have explored.  A stroll through a wild yet well-tended garden of interwoven spontaneity will ensue!

Saturday, January 10, 2015 - Down to Earth/New Vessels

12:30 pm at the Sir James Dunn Theatre

12:30 PM

Improvisation Talk Back (free admission)
On Saturday afternoon in the Dunn Theatre, six improvisators from different genres will be playing different instruments and performing a collective improvisation. The audience is invited to question the performers about the music played and the outcome. Lively discussion Is sure to ensue as the musicians engage with the audience. The talk back is an initiative of the Guelph Jazz Festival and the recently-founded Institute of Improvisation Community and Studies in Improvisation with which Upstream Music is now associated.
Upstream Music Association wishes to thank the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) for fostering moments where communities and world harmony intersect.

2:30 PM

Dalhousie New Music Workshop
The future is now! Come hear what the next generation of musicians has to say: the members of the Dalhousie New Music Workshop are exciting and bold young composers, performers and improvisers, and they will shake the house with surprising new works. This year, thanks to Upstream’s Outreach Program, we are very pleased to welcome special guest Jeff Reilly.

Saturday January 10 - Fire on the Water
7:30 PM at The Atlantica Hotel in the Commons Room

7:30 PM

Lukas Pearse
Mixing live bass with signal processing and live manipulation of bass-derived recordings, Lukas Pearse  combines his dual passions of improvisation and electroacoustic sound design.   Prepare to have deep feelings... all about the bass.

8:15 PM

Les Mécaniques de Nuit
Les Mécaniques De Nuit is a duo featuring James Southcott on violin and Howard Beye on Viola. Their unique pairing of stringed instruments played to intensity pushes the listener to greater listening and involvement.
Upstream is delighted to present this unique Halifax based musical partnership following their debut in the Open Waters Festival last year.

9:00 PM

Free Delivery with Joe McPhee
New York's Joe McPhee is an American jazz multi-instrumentalist born in Miami, Florida specializing in the saxophone. 
He will be a featured performer with Free Delivery (Rick Waychesko, Dave Burton, Danny Martin) the latest vehicle of Canadian bandleader/composer Paul Cram

9:45 PM

Not the Music (Quebec)
Not the Music is a strange non-chamber music duo featuring featuring Philippe Lauzier (bass clarinet, soprano saxophone) and Éric Normand (bass, snare drum) Focusing on so-called extended techniques, the murmurs and the inner songs of their instruments, Lauzier and Normand are developing complex and sophisticated music that lies somewhere between Morton Feldman and engine sounds, always on a tightwire running between precision and a taste for accidents. Philippe and Eric weave a contemplative sound world that rests uneasily at the edge of an abyss, taming the monsters of roughness. They run their nails on a blackboard without making you wince.

10:30 PM

Riot Squad
Jamie Gatti’s Riot Squad has been blowing away audiences for four years now.  With their unique instrumental sound, this Halifax-based Jazz/Jam ensemble takes listeners on a new journey every night.  The band performs original music  steeped in the genres of Jazz/Funk/Rock/Exploratory music. This powerful Quintet consists of Chris Mitchell (saxes), Rick Waychesko (trumpet) Geordie Haley (guitar) David Burton (drums) and Jamie Gatti on bass.

Festival Tickets

Festival Passes

Tickets are also available at the Dalhousie Arts Centre Box Office: For information please call 902-494-3820.

Please note: Tickets for Saturday night events are available at the door at The Commons Room Saturday night or at the PayPal button above.

Discount of $5.00 for Symphony New Music patrons and Upstream members.

~~Thursday, January 8, 2015 and Tuesday, January 13, 2015
Symphony Nova Scotia at the Open Waters Festival of new and improvised music

All tickets 50% off for Open Waters (Upstream) patrons with discount code: rachmaninoff

Masterpieces by Mozart and Haydn
Thursday, January 8, 2015, 7:30 pm
Rebecca Cohn Auditorium, Halifax

Featuring: Bernhard Gueller, conductor, Jutta Puchhammer-Sédillot, viola, Renaud Lapierre, violin

One concert, three dramatic masterpieces! First, hear Tim Brady's acclaimed Viola Concerto, performed by top Canadian violist Jutta Puchhammer-Sédillot. Then, Jutta partners with Symphony Nova Scotia's own Renaud Lapierre for a double performance in the dazzling Sinfonia Concertante, the greatest of Mozart's string concertos. Finally, hear Haydn's last symphony, and one of his best - the unsurpassable "London", a tour de force of mastery and invention.
Tuesday, January 13, 2015, 7:30 pm
The Sir James Dunn Theatre, Halifax
Featuring: Bernhard Gueller, conductor, Janice Jackson, soprano, Simon Docking, piano

Symphony Nova Scotia explores emerging, unconventional, and cutting-edge symphonic music as part of the 2015 Open Waters New Music Festival. Hear our premiere performances of four compelling new works: Canadian composer Jeffrey Ryan's Juno-nominated Pangaea, Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina's mystical Piano Concerto, Anton Webern's meditative Symphony, Op. 21, and the world premiere of a brand-new composition from Halifax's own Jerome Blais, written especially for our orchestra.

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