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Critical Band

[sax] + Champ d’Action

The ensembles BL!NDMAN and Champ d’Action are both well-known for their non-conformist views on the manner in which contemporary music can be presented. They are often looking for special locations or are placing the concert hall in a novel, innovative setting. Light and spatial interpretations of the area where the musicians perform, turn their concerts into something different from what is commonly understood in the traditional sense.

For the project Critical Band (after James Tenney), they have joined forces for the first time, in the first place out of the desire to collaborate, but also because they were driven by their joint passion for the music of James Tenney. When the latter passed away in August 2006, his death barely was mentioned in the media. Yet, Tenney’s name has been ubiquitous in American music history for at least the past 40 years. He made music with John Cage, Steve Reich, and Phil Glass. He was an influential theoretician, the founder of the Tone Roads ensemble, a teacher at the famous institute CalArts, and was instrumental in fostering the rise of an important group of composers. But, above all, he himself was an innovative composer, known for his elegant, acoustic and electronic creations. He is considered to be the forerunner of the later European spectralists. That is why his music in this project is joined by the works of the spectralists Grisey and Scelsi.

Eric Sleichim: composition, artistic director BL!NDMAN
Serge Verstockt: composition, artistic director Champ d’Action
Jaan Bossier: conductor

BL!NDMAN [sax]
Koen Maas: soprano saxophone
Roeland Vanhoorne: alto saxophone
Piet Rebel: tenor saxophone
Raf Minten: baritone saxophone

Champ d’Action
Lode Leire: double bass
Marcel Andriessen: percussion
Sabine Warnier: flute
Sabine Uytterhoeven*: clarinet
Tom Verschoore: trombone
Gudrun Vercampt: violin
Jeroen Robbrecht: viola
Arne Deforce: cello
Annelies Boodts: harp
Maarten Buyl: electronics
Els Mondelaers: soprano

Critical Band is a production of BL!NDMAN and Champ d’Action, in coproduction with deSingel/Antwerp.


J. Tenney: Saxony
E. Sleichim: Rruisveld
G. Scelsi: Okanogon
J. Tenney: Voice(s)
G. Grisey: Périodes
S. Verstockt: Twisted pair 1


26 Oct
Centro Difusión Música Contemporánea
Madrid (ES)
06 Nov
Brugge (BE)
04 Nov
Brussel / Bruxelles (BE)
17 Sep
DE SINGEL (première)
Antwerpen (BE)