Podcast: Live, from the Orpheus Institute!

Orpheus Institute Doctoral Conference 2018 – Dissolving Borders: “Musical Migration / Migratory Musicking”

I know, Musicking is not a word, indeed it’s a dreadful thing to see on the printed page or on your screen…which is why I’ve put it in quotation marks. But it’s an idea, and was part of the theory behind the workshop/symposium I attended last month in Gent. And it was a marvelous event indeed. This podcast tries to bring together some of the themes of our discussion, through words and music.

Here’s a statement from the Orpheus Institute: “Dissolving Borders invited proposals that will investigate and problematize how musicians create political spaces that transcend demarcated space and culture, on scales both global and local, macro and micro. We seek work that engages with the complex realities of inter-cultural contact, including issues of migration, communication, integration, acceptance, and symbiosis. As the world experiences radical displacement during an era of unprecedented enforcement of borders, we seek earnest engagements with the vibrant history of music’s entanglement with these issues. Looking to past musics, musicians, and scholarship, we encourage imaginations of music’s current and future role as a cultural and political agent.”



AMERICAN HIGHWAYS #112: Conference on Music and Migration at the Orpheus Institute in Gent, Belgium

In this episode of American Highways, I bring you a first for myself, something I’ve been wanting to host for a long time – a show created in front of, and in cooperation with, a live audience. On April 18th, 2018, the Orpheus Institute in Gent, Belgium hosted a symposium on Music and Migration. And just after the keynote speech, I sat down with some amazing researchers for an hour of music and discussion. Many thanks to organizer Ned McGowan, and engineer Siamak Anvari who made it all sound so good. The speakers are: Avery Gosfield, Liselotte Sels, Kira Dralle, Catalina Vicens, Lukas Ligeti, and Iye Echa. The live performances are by myself and Avery Gosfield. Additional recordings are courtesey of Iye Echa, Lukas Ligeti, and Catalina Vicens.


Theme Music
Sounds About Right

George Antheil
Jazz Sonata
Guy Livingston, pianist
Live performance

George Antheil
Sonatina fur Radio
Guy Livingston, pianist
WERGO 6646-2

Henry Cowell
Persian Set – movement iv. Presto
Manhattan Chamber Orchestra, cond by Richard Auldon Clark
Koch 3-7220-2 HI

Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht/Marc Blitzstein
Pirate Jenny
Nina Simone
Philips 822 846-2

Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht/Marc Blitzstein
Mack the Knife
Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington Orchestra & Jimmy Jones Trio
Eagle Vision ‎– EREDV431

Henry Cowell
Aeolian Harp
Guy Livingston, pianist
Live performance

Lukas ligeti
Lukas Ligeti, Eyal Maoz, James Ilgenfritz
Tzadik 7811

Henry Cowell
Tides of Manuanuan
Guy Livingston, pianist
live performance

Catalina Vicens/Thomas More
A Utopian Hymn
Catalina Vicens
ConcertZender recording

Genesis 1-21
Servir Antico
ConcertZender recording

Wolf Heckel
Judentanz (1556)
Avery Gosfield, recorder
Live performance

Guilermo Ibreo da Pesaro
Petit Riens
Avery Gosfield, piccolo and drum
Live performance

Iye Eche
Belle Cramp
Iye Eche, saxophone

Catalina and Avery speaking with Guy at the Orpheus Institute in April 2018



Kira A. Dralle is currently a PhD student and Associate Instructor in Cross-Cultural Musicology at the University of California Santa Cruz. She holds an MA in the History and Theory of Contemporary Art, as well as an MFA in Studio Art with an emphasis in performative works and sound installations from the San Francisco Art Institute. Exploring concepts of post-coloniality, subaltern studies, feminism, and Afrofuturism, Kira’s work examines the music of 20th and 21st century American and European political movements, presidential campaigns, and moments of political unrest. Her most recent publications on music and artistic monuments and the ethical concerns of New Music and social activism can be found in ​Ethnomusicology Review and with the San Francisco Center for New Music.

P.I. Echa is a Musicologist and Cultural Analyst. His research interests include music and migration, music history and expression in performance, music in world cultures, jazz improvisation and music education. He is a doctoral student at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. His doctoral research is on the significance of djembe music for West African djembe Musicians in the Netherlands. His research investigates the artistic contributions of some West African djembe musicians who have migrated and settled in the Netherlands.

Avery Gosfield directs the medieval-renaissance ensemble Lucidarium, with over 500 concerts to its name and a number of award-winning recordings. She has taught master classes on five continents at institutions that include the Geneva Conservatory, Yiddish Summer Weimar and the Cini Foundation and regularly gives lectures in both academic and lay settings. Recent publications include “I Sing it to an Italian Tune… Thoughts on Performing Sixteenth-Century Italian-Jewish Sung Poetry Today,” European Journal of Jewish Studies 8 (2014), “Gratias post mensam in diebus festiuis cum cantico Hebraim: A new look at an early sixteenth century Tzur Mishelo,” Yearbook for European Jewish Literature Studies (De Gruyter: 2017), and upcoming publications for Brill and Venice Music Studies, among others. In 2016, she curated the STIMU symposium, entitled “Reinventing a Usable Past,” at the Utrecht Early Music Festival, narrated a documentary (“Het Venetiaanse Ghetto”) and created, together with Lucidarium “Sounds from Shylock’s Venice” a concert/multimedia project in commemoration of the 500-year anniversary of the establishment of the Venice Ghetto. In 2017 she directed a one-week course at the Foundation Cini as part of “Shakespeare in and Out of the Ghetto”, a Creative Europe project funded by a European Union grant and sponsored by Ca’ Foscari, the Cini Foundation, the Geneva Conservatory and the City of Geneva. www.lucidarium.com

Lukas Ligeti‘s compositions have been commissioned by Bang on a Can, the Kronos Quartet, Ensemble Modern, eighth blackbird, the American Composers Orchestra, the MDR Symphony Orchestra (Leipzig, Germany), and many others. As a drummer, he has worked with John Zorn, Marilyn Crispell, John Tchicai, etc., and has given solo electronic percussion concerts on four continents. Active in experimental collaboration in Africa for more than 20 years, he co-founded the ensemble Beta Foly in Côte d’Ivoire and co-leads Burkina Electric, the first electronica band from Burkina Faso. He received the CalArts Alpert Award in Music in 2010. Lukas studied composition at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, Austria. After living for many years in New York City, he now divides his time between California, where he teaches at UC Irvine, and South Africa, where he is completing a PhD at the University of the Witwatersrand.

Liselotte Sels (PhD) is an ethnomusicologist, pianist and harpsichordist. At Artesis Plantijn University College, she conducts a research project about Iranian contemporary music, and teaches an introductory course about ethnomusicology and Iranian music. In 2014, she completed her PhD at Ghent University, with a dissertation titled “Türkü and Halay between Ghent and Turkey: An Ethnographic Study of Turkish Folk Music in a Transnational Context”. In 2015, she worked as a visiting researcher at UCSB, supported by a B.A.E.F. postdoctoral research grant, on the interrelations of the Radif with other Iranian musical repertoires. From 2006 to 2014, she taught several subjects at University College Ghent and Artevelde University College Ghent, and coached numerous bachelor and master research projects. Liselotte studied musicology and piano at Ghent University and University College Ghent, and is currently specializing in early music (harpsichord and fortepiano) at the Royal Conservatoire Antwerp.

Catalina Vicens, native of Chile and now resident in Basel, Switzerland, started her international career at an early age. By age 20 she had already played in the main concert-halls of more than ten countries in North and South America, including the Teatro Colón de Buenos Aires Argentina, the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia and the Teatro Municipal do São Paulo. Catalina Vicens studied harpsichord at the Curtis Institute of Music with Lionel Party, at the Musikhochschule Freiburg with Prof Robert Hill and at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis with Andrea Marcon and Jesper Christensen. She also received a Master’s Degree in Medieval Keyboards with Corina Marti at the same institution (world’s first). She later specialized in Contemporary Music Performance on historical keyboards and took courses in historic and traditional percussion instruments. Catalina is currently Ph.D. candidate at Leiden University / Orpheus Institute Ghent, under the supervision of Dinko Fabris and Ton Koopman. Vicens performs and records regularly as member of ensembles of Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and New music in Europe, USA and South America. She is artistic director of Servir Antico, with whom she aims to recover the less-known repertoire and intellectual heritage of the humanistic period (13th-16th century). As an orchestra member she has performed under the direction of well-known conductors such as, Otto-Werner Müller, Gottfried von der Goltz, Andrea Marcon, Skip Sempé and Carlos Miguel Prieto.


Avery Gosfield, Liselotte Sels, Kira Dralle, Catalina Vicens, Lukas Ligeti, Iye Echa, Ned McGowan, The Orpheus Institute, Heike Vermeire, and Siamak Anvari.

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