The ICA is pleased to announce Calling Out Of Context, a festival of experimental music and sound which fills the building for nine days in November. One of the ICA’s Galleries is being used as a performance space, while the other features a recording studio, and the Theatre is hosting gigs, workshops and discussions. The programme across these spaces includes an incredible range of musicians and artists, revealing the vitality and relevance of the sonic avant-garde.
Calling Out Of Context features over forty performers and groups, including both emerging figures and well-known names. Many of the participants cross the boundaries between different musical traditions, and the festival (which takes its title from a song by the American underground musician Arthur Russell) draws on the explosively experimental ethos of the 60s and 70s. The programme includes performances by The Red Krayola, Gravetemple, Aaron Dilloway, Teppich (Ei Arakawa and Sergei Tcherepnin), Seb Rochford, Rhys Chatham, 9!, Mira Calix, James Beckett, AGF and Lucky Dragons, as well as new sound works by Jan St Werner and Robin Watkins, and recording sessions from About, Mica Levi (aka Michachu), Alexander Tucker and Woebot. It concludes with a weekend of events dedicated to the British avant-garde musician and activist Cornelius Cardew, featuring contributions from John Tilbury and Ultra-red, amongst others.
Contemporary music provides many different models for production and performance, and for interaction with the world around us. It can be both a site for improvisation, experimentation and technological development, and also a means to frame ideas through popular and accessible forms. It can highlight the aural landscape we live in, and can suggest ways of harnessing the latter as an active social force. Through performance and debate, Calling Out Of Context sets out to test these concerns, its nine-day programme developed around a number of key themes, including collectivity, listening, noise, improvisation, composition and recording. Like Cardew, all of the participants in Calling Out Of Context push at the boundaries of sound, and importantly they also use it to inspire ideas and actions.