Roots & Rhizomes Percussion Residency

Program dates: August 10, 2014 - August 16, 2014

This program was delayed from 2013 due to flooding and attendance will be by invitation only, prioritising those who were accepted in 2013.

Program Information

Director: Steven Schick - ,
Faculty: Gabriela Ortiz - Composer, Lewis Nielson - , Allen Otte - , Aiyun Huang - , Roland Auzet - ,

About Roots & Rhizomes Percussion Residency

Led by contemporary percussion champion Steven Schick, this unique program is geared towards early to mid-career artists, who want to contribute to the growth of contemporary percussion.

Roots and Rhizomes will feature three primary activities:

  1. performances by the residents of selected repertoire,
  2. coaching, lessons, and master classes,
  3. seminars and discussions led by faculty.

Roots and Rhizomes seeks to foster new music for contemporary percussionists by commissioning and premiering new work in an environment where performers and composers work collaboratively. Participants will also seek to understand this new work in the context of the history of contemporary percussion playing, by preparing and performing classic works for percussion under the supervision of distinguished percussionists who premiered or championed those pieces.

Featured repertoire:

Cage the New Yorker
John Cage, Second Construction
David Lang, So-called Laws of Nature Mvt. II
John Cage, Credo in US
Michael Gordon, Selection from Timber
John Cage, Third Construction

At the Edge of the Imagination
Mauricio Kagel, Dressur
Gabriela Ortiz, commissioned work
Lewis Nielson, Tocsin

Xenakis Cabaret
Solo and chamber works by Iannis Xenakis

Percussion music is both one of the oldest musical forms known in the world and among the most recent arrivals on the Western art music scene. The Roots and Rhizomes Residency will be a two-fold examination of contemporary percussion playing — looking at the past and moving forward into the realm of contemporary music. Participants will explore the roots of percussion through examination of historic repertoire, and will interact with faculty who have pioneered contemporary percussion playing, applying ideas that form the bedrock of this art. Participants will also work with faculty to discover new percussion music and the myriad ways in which new musical forms branch off from pre-existing forms.

In order to maximize limited space and instruments, solo repertoire for lessons will be chosen in advance from works proposed in the resident’s application.

Created as the centrepiece of the inaugural Roots and Rhizomes music residency, John Luther Adams collaborated with Steven Schick on Inuksuit, specifically written to be performed outdoors. Evan Hurd, who photographed a profile on Adams by Alex Ross, produced this short documentary for newyorker.com.


The Roots & Rhizomes Percussion Residency is supported by

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Above photo: Photo courtesy of The Banff Centre

All programs, faculty, dates, fees, and offers of financial assistance are subject to change. Program fee subject to applicable taxes. Non-refundable fees and deposits will be retained upon cancellation. Any other fees are refunded at the discretion of The Banff Centre.