Live quartet improvisation:
John Butcher – saxophone
Caius Williams – double bass
Tilly Coulton – flute
Douglas Benford – harmonium/objects
Doors 3.30 | music 4pm | £8/£10 donation at the door
Born in Brighton and living in London, John Butcher is a saxophonist whose work ranges through improvisation, his own compositions, multitracked pieces and explorations with feedback, unusual acoustics and non-concert locations. He is well known as a solo performer who attempts to engage with a sense of place. Resonant Spaces, for example, is a collection of performances recorded during a tour of unusual locations in Scotland and the Orkney Islands. After publishing a PH.D (1982) in quantum chromodynamics, Butcher left academia and took off with music. He has since collaborated with hundreds of artists, some for many decades. To name a few: Derek Bailey, Akio Suzuki, John Stevens’ Spontaneous Music Ensemble, Rhodri Davies, Last Dream of the Morning (with John Edwards & Mark Sanders), Steve Beresford, Matthew Shipp, Gerry Hemingway, Chris Burn, Magda Mayas, Gino Robair, Thermal (Andy Moor & Thomas Lehn), Christian Marclay, Eddie Prévost, Okkyung Lee, John Russell, Ståle Liavik Solberg and Phil Minton.
Compositions have been varied. Three for his own large ensembles at HCMF, two saxophone quartets, a piece for Futurist Intonarumori, Tarab Cuts (based on early Arabic recordings), and pieces for the London Sinfonietta and CEPRO (created for a XVI convent in Mexico City). Butcher also values playing in occasional encounters – ranging from large groups such as Butch Morris’ London Skyscraper, Fred van Hove’s t’nonet, the WDR Sinfonieorchester and the EX Orkestra, to duo concerts with Sophie Agnel, Joe McPhee, Keiji Haino, David Toop, Akira Sakata, Eli Keszler, John Tilbury, Fred Frith, Ute Kanngiesser, and Otomo Yoshihide.
Caius Williams is an improviser, bassist, and composer from London with a varied practice including improvised music, electronic music, and projects exploring experimental approaches to composition. Alongside his involvement in various groups and partnerships in and around London, Caius works frequently as a bandleader, and has recently completed and recorded his first large-ensemble project (‘Thread’), and a solo project for double bass. Some current collaborative/supportive roles include a duo project with guitarist Tara Cunningham, playing for songwriter and producer ‘feeo’, and recently working in ‘Lifetones’: a project led by Charles Bullen of ‘This Heat’, alongside working with many of London’s notable improvisers. He has also been running and curating the ‘grain’ residency for improvised and experimental music at Avalon Cafe in Bermondsey for the last few years.
Tilly, a versatile flautist, improviser, and educator from Devon, England, is deeply immersed in the world of contemporary and experimental music. She honed her skills during her undergraduate studies at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and is now coming to the end of her master’s degree at the Royal College of Music. Tilly has played alongside orchestras such as the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish Opera and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, as well as winning first prize in the RCS Concerto Competition and Recital Prize for Woodwind. Driven by a love for Avant Garde and the unusual, Tilly actively engages with contemporary and experimental works. She has collaborated with composers to premiere pieces such Erin Thomson’s “Infinite Kaleidoscope” for flute and electronics, and Oliver Hawker’s “Good News Behind Closed Eyes” for flute and upright saw. Tilly plays regularly with London Improvisers Orchestra, is a member of the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group’s NEXT Programme and serves as principal flute in the contemporary ensemble Standard Issue.
Tilly Coulton Youtube
Douglas Benford, composer and sound artist, has been involved in various audio genres and monikers since the late 1980s, performing at institutions in the UK (Bristol’s Arnolfini, London’s Science Museum, Tate Modern, The Roundhouse, ICA and Glasgow’s CCA), festivals worldwide (Mutek, Synch, Transmediale) and has had installation work in numerous UK galleries (London, Swansea, Stroud and Essex). His pieces and performances have been aired on the radio internationally, and regularly on BBC Radio 3’s Freeness programme and the Ambrosia Rasputin show on Resonance FM. After numerous electronica releases and activity in the 90s and 2000s, he now plays using acoustic sources (eg harmonium, toys, objects) with the London Improvisers Orchestra and Confront Recordings / Mark Wastell’s The Seen collective, as well as being a regular contributor to the Lonely Impulse Collective. His collaborators include Alan Wilkinson, Dominic Lash, Blanca Regina, poet Tamar Yoseloff, Angharad Davies, sculptor Rob Olins, Matt Atkins, Lina Lapelyte, Marjolaine Charbin, Sylvia Hallett, Steve Beresford, Hannah Marshall, Adam Bohman, John Edwards, Jennifer Allum, and Sue Lynch.