"Bang on a Can is building a world in which powerful new musical ideas flow freely across all genres and borders. Bang on a Can plays a central role in fostering a new kind of audience that doesn't concern itself with boundaries"
Field Recordings is an ongoing multi media project, up to 18 commissioned works. Using archival audio, found sound and video, Field Recordings builds a bridge between the seen and the unseen, the present and absent, the present and the past, channeled through the “unstoppable, sexy, and loud” Bang on a Can All-Stars.
Commissioned by Carnegie Hall as a companion for his Pulitzer Prize winning piece The Little Match Girl Passion, David Lang’s Death Speaks was designed to cross between the intimate, expressive world of indie rock and the structural directness of the songs of Franz Schubert.
Julia Wolfe’s Anthracite Fields, explores coal-mining life and the fields of central Pennsylvania near her hometown. The composer draws from oral histories, interviews, speeches, geographic descriptions, local rhymes, and coal advertisements in creating a unique oratorio that provides an intimate look at a particular slice of American life.
The Carbon Copy Building is a dynamic and visually stunning trip through the gritty underside of urban life. Words and drawings by celebrated New York comic-strip artist and MacArthur Grant recipient Ben Katchor are brought vividly to life in a multimedia show with music by Bang on a Can composer/artistic directors Michael Gordon, David Lang and Julia Wolfe and directed by Bob McGrath.
Lost Objects is a musical exploration of the meaning of memory. With the spine of a baroque oratorio layered with the muscle of modern times, it is a powerful monument to the loss of people, things, rituals, ideas.
“Road Trip sounded like the most propulsive, hurtling
Bang on a Can music yet.” – NY Times
30 years ago, three young composers, Michael Gordon, David Lang, and Julia Wolfe started a journey together, and they called that journey “Bang on a Can.” After hundreds of thousands of miles and hundreds of new pieces, records, productions, marathons and summer festivals, they’re still best of friends – on the road together, sharing the journey. The electric Bang on a Can All-Stars power it up. Director Michael Counts and scenic designer Deborah Johnson (aka CandyStations) create an immersive landscape. Road Trip takes us on a cross country trek – celebrating the freedom and mystery of the open road. Dirt road, country road, two lane blacktop, superhighway. Destination unknown. Maybe even unknowable.
Bang on a Can was started in 1987 by co-artistic directors Michael Gordon, David Lang and Julia Wolfe. Since its first Marathon concert, Bang on a Can has been creating an international community dedicated to innovative music, wherever it is found.
With adventurous programs, it commissions new composers, performs, presents, and records new work, develops new audiences, and educates the musicians of the future. Over the past quarter century Bang on a Can has grown into a major new music presenting force, with mumultiple touring productions and new multi-media performances such as Field Recordings, Carbon Copy Building, Lost Objects and The New Yorkers .