Into the Dark Too
Featuring: Symprov Trio
Sunday, Mar. 15 – 7:00 pm
Regional Arts Commission
$15 / $10 for students, artists

HEARding Cats Collective is proud to present the return of Symprov Trio – an ensemble of virtuoso current and former St. Louis Symphony Orchestra musicians interacting with free improvisation. Featured musicians include Asako Kuboki (violin), Timothy Myers (trombone), and Rich O’Donnell (see-saw drums). This concert continues an exploration begun by Rich O’Donnell in 2013 where audience members experience the concert in darkness – highlighting how one’s brain shifts perceptive resources from sight to sound in the dark, heightening humans’ experience with the music.

Asako Kuboki began her violin studies at the age of five in Japan. She received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the Peabody Conservatory, studying with Sylvia Rosenberg and Victor Danchenko. Kuboki performed extensively with the New Horizons Chamber Ensemble in Baltimore, a contemporary music group that worked in collaboration with composers, poets, and visual artists, for five seasons. She has also played with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, and the Key West Symphony Orchestra. In 2001 Kuboki joined the St. Louis Symphony. Since relocating to St. Louis she has continued performing chamber music and solo recitals throughout the U.S., and at international music festivals.

Timothy Myers has held the St. Louis Symphony’s William J. Orthwein Principal Trombone Chair since 1997. Mr. Myers originally joined the St. Louis Symphony in 1983 as Assistant Principal Trombone. A graduate of Northwestern University, Myers studied with the late Frank Crisafulli and the late Arnold Jacobs, both legendary members of the famed Chicago Symphony low brass section. Myers has performed with the Chicago Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, and Minnesota Orchestra and has given a number of solo recitals in the Midwest. He has also toured with the Summit Brass. He has a great interest in new music and has premiered many solo trombone works for St. Louis audiences.

Rich O’Donnell’s career as a professional musician spans six decades. In addition to his virtuosity as a percussionist, O’Donnell is a prolific composer, innovator and inventor of percussion and electronic instruments, a teacher, and a writer. He is currently director of the Electronic Music Studio at Washington University, St. Louis

These days, O’Donnell’s primary percussive interest involves improvised music using his self-created see-saw drumming technique. See-saw drumming is based on reciprocal motion and makes use of two beaters per hand (and foot). Using two beaters per appendage gives O’Donnell the ability to create complex layers of polyrhythms and hemiolas that provide new insight into rhythmical structures. He no longer thinks in terms of downbeats and bars, but rather convergence, overlays, and cycles of the various layers. This technique can be fast and dense, but it can also be elegant and in the pocket. Some of the new rhythmic explorations O’Donnell achieves with see-saw drumming include:

Harmonic rhythms—poly-rhythms or poly-tempos with an integer ratio (i.e.: 3:4:5) that are synchronized like the ratios found in the harmonic series. Pattern shifts occur within the common subdivisions.

Moire patterns—synced, epicycle patterns outlined by accents or short rests (negative space). The listener’s perception determines which pattern is dominant – just like the changing patterns seen when looking through two window screens.

Swarms—like swarms of insects, birds, or fish, where the rule is to keep the distance as close as possible without touching, (the sonic analogy is that each voice plays close to the same speed, without synching). A slight shift will “push” the whole group.

Hear What You Don’t See
(Listening in the Dark)
Friday, Jan. 24 – 7:30 pm
Regional Arts Commission
6128 Delmar Blvd
Admission: $15 / $10 students, artists

HEARding Cats is back in the new year with strange and wonderful arts events sure surprise and delight! Join HCC’s artistic directors, Rich O’Donnell and Doc Mabuse for a duo educational concert Hear What You Don’t See.

Long time St. Louis percussion and improvising musician Rich O’Donnell will join master syntheist Doc Mabuse for a continuation of their explorations into “theaters of senses.” O’Donnell will play his self-invented “SeeSaw percussion,” while Mabuse joins him on analog synthesizer and guitar.

The pair recently produced AQurld Waves, St. Louis’ first underwater concert, which used the water to create a special focus for audience members. The sensation of one’s gravity free body partially submerged in water creates a unique environment for experiencing music.

Likewise, in Hear What You Don’t See, O’Donnell and Mabuse present short movements of music in darkness with discussion and questions in between. The goal is to bring listeners’ attention to how their brains shift perceptive resources. In the dark, we “give to our ears, what we take from our eyes.” This results in more focused and acute listening. Audio details are enhanced, as is auditory idea development. Time becomes suspended as we listen in the dark, and music becomes a meditation.