BANG ON A CAN ALL-STARS
Formed in 1987, Bang on a Can is an organization that is dedicated to commissioning,
performing, creating, presenting, and recording contemporary music. Its founders-Michael
Gordon, David Lang, and Julie Wolfe-recognized early on that their new and open approach to
presenting music required new and open performers-a generation of virtuosic and passionate
musicians who could cross boundaries and adapt to many styles and technologies. The three
assembled a core of such exciting players and in 1992, formed Bang on a Can
The Bang on a Can All-Stars' instrumentation shows the aesthetics for which the ensemble
was designed. Clarinets, cello, keyboard, electric guitar, bass, and drums-part rock band,
part amplified chamber group. Constructed specifically to blur the lines between classical
and pop ensembles, the lineup was chosen to give voice to a huge range of music and styles,
its players having musical backgrounds and abilities to match. Each player is completely at
home with new music, but has delved into other areas as well; members have collaborated
with Yo-Yo Ma, and toured with Paul Simon and Bob Dylan. With their extensive experience,
the Bang on a Can All-Stars create an intense, hard-rocking approach to performance that is
The All-Stars work with artists who are equally passionate, fierce, adventuresome, and
dedicated. Among those with whom the ensemble has collaborated are Burmese circle-drum
master Kyaw Kyaw Naing, Czech composer-singer-violinist Iva Bittová, post-jazz virtuoso Don
Byron, and avant-garde rock giants Lee Ranaldo (of Sonic Youth) and Glenn Kotche (of
Wilco). Through their work with other performers, the All-Stars test boundaries, tearing
down walls and building anew.
Most recently, the All-Stars opened the 2009 Manchester Festival with the world premiere
of Steve Reich's 2x5, sharing the bill with legendary German electronica pioneers
Kraftwerk. They were also presented by Cal Performances / UC Berkeley in the premiere of
Evan Ziporyn's A House in Bali, a new dance-opera that features Balinese
gamelan. New projects this season include commissions from Louis Andriessen, Bill
Frisell, and Ryuichi Sakamoto, among others.
The Bang on a Can All-Stars record for the Cantaloupe Music label, and have previously
released recordings on Sony, Universal, and Nonesuch. Please visit bangonacan.org for more
Born in 1985, American cellist Ashley Bathgate has appeared at the Saratoga Chamber Music
Festival, Barge Music, Windham Chamber Music Festival, the Pleshakov Music Center, and the
Moulin d'Andé in Normandy (France). She made her New York debut in Weill Recital Hall with
pianist Todd Crow in 2008, and has been a featured artist on WMHT-FM and WQXR's
Invited frequently to perform with orchestras, Ms. Bathgate has been a soloist with the
Lake Placid Sinfonietta, Woodstock Chamber Orchestra, Windham Chamber Players, and the
American Symphony Orchestra under Leon Botstein. She recently appeared with the Greater
Newburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Yale Philharmonia.
Ms. Bathgate performs regularly in benefit concerts and chamber music recitals worldwide,
and has worked with such artists as pianist Pascal Rogé and violinist Chantal Juillet. A
champion of new music, she has performed works by John Adams, Martin Bresnick, Michael
Gordon, and David Lang.
A full-scholarship student at Bard College, where she studied cello with Luis
Garcia-Rènart and composition with Joan Tower, Ms. Bathgate received her master's degree
and artist diploma from Yale University School of Music. At Yale, she was awarded the Aldo
Parisot Prize, and studied with the likes of Ezra Laderman, Claude Frank, Boris Berman,
Peter Frankl, and Ani Kavafian. She was also a member of the acclaimed Yale Cellos
Among her awards are a grant from the New York Philharmonic Players Fund, sponsored by
Stephen and Elaine Stamas, and top prizes in the Lois Lyman Concerto Competition, 2006 Hugo
Kauder Memorial Music Competition, and the 2008 Woolsey Hall Concerto Competition (Yale).
As a member of the Lorien Trio, she recently received the Bronze Medal at the 2009 Fischoff
National Chamber Music Competition.
Bassist Robert Black's interests range from traditional orchestral and chamber music to
solo recitals, collaborations with actors, music with computers, movement-based
improvisations with dancers, and live action-painting performances with artists. He has
commissioned, collaborated, or performed with such musicians as John Cage, D. J. Spooky,
Elliott Carter, Meredith Monk, Cecil Taylor, and Paquito d'Rivera, as well as many young
emerging composers. His recital activities frequently take him to five continents, and
major festivals in Japan, Brazil, Colombia, Finland, and Estonia. He has been heard on
numerous radio and television broadcasts worldwide, and was an artist-in-residence at the
American Center in Paris, Studio P.A.S.S. in New York City, and the Banff Centre.
Additional chamber music activities include performances with the Ciompi and Miami string
quartets. He recently created and performed the music for Kathryn Walker's production of
The Odyssey at the Music Theater Group, and with the Full Force Dance Company's
Time On Our Hands. Other collaborations include films by Rudy Burckhardt and live
action-painting improvisations with Brazilian painter Ige D'Aquino.
Mr. Black appears annually at the Monadnock and Moab music festivals, among others. He
also performs with the Hartford Symphony and the Monadnock Festival Orchestra, teaches at
University of Hartford's Hartt School and the Festival Eleazar de Carvalho (Brazil).
A member of Manhattan School of Music's Contemporary Performance Program, Mr. Black is a
recipient of numerous grants, including the 1998 Bessie Award for his collaborative work
with The School of Hard Knocks in New York City. He has released solo CDs of music by
Christian Wolff and Giacinto Scelsi, and recorded for Sony Classical, Point/Polygram, and
Koch International, among many others.
Mr. Black joined the International Society of Bassists Board of Directors in 2001. He is
also the editor of the "New Score" column in the journal Bass World, a frequent
adjudicator for the Concert Artists Guild Competition in New York City, and serves on the
Advisory Board for the international radio program, Art of the States.
A specialist in new and experimental music, percussionist David Cossin has worked across a
broad spectrum of musical and artistic forms to incorporate new media with percussion. He
has recorded and performed internationally with such composers and ensembles as the Bang on
a Can All-Stars, Steve Reich and Musicians, Philip Glass, Yo-Yo Ma, Meredith Monk, Tan Dun,
Cecil Taylor, Talujon Percussion Quartet, and the trio Real Quiet. His numerous theater
projects include collaborations with Blue Man Group, Mabou Mines, and director Peter
Mr. Cossin was featured as the percussion soloist in Tan Dun's Grammy- and Oscar-winning
score to Ang Lee's film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. He has performed as a
soloist with orchestras worldwide, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Orchestre Radio
France, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, São Paulo State Symphony, Sydney Symphony, Göteborgs
Symfoniker, Hong Kong Symphony, and Singapore Symphony.
Mr. Cossin's ventures into other art forms include sonic installations that have been
presented in New York, Italy, and Germany. An active composer, he has invented several
instruments that expand the limits of traditional percussion.
Mr. Cossin is the curator for the Sound Res Festival, an experimental music festival in
southern Italy, and teaches percussion at Queens College in New York City.
Among New York City's most adventurous young pianists, David Friend has performed in sound
installations, multimedia collaborations, and rock venues. Recent performances include
those with the Juilliard Percussion Ensemble in a sold-out concert at Lincoln Center, a
recital of Frederic Rzewski's theatrical masterpiece De Profundis at Riverside
Church, and a concert with the Conservatory Project at the Kennedy Center.
Passionate about contemporary music, Mr. Friend has worked with such established and
emerging composers as Charles Wuorinen and David Lang, and students at Manhattan School of
Music, Aspen Music Festival, and the Bang on a Can Summer Residency. In celebration of the
Messiaen centennial, Mr. Friend was featured as soloist in Oiseaux exotiques in
Aspen's Benedict Music Tent last summer. He was also the soloist in the New York premiere
of Lowell Liebermann's Concerto No. 1.
With an abiding interest in pushing the boundaries of musical performance, Mr. Friend has
mounted numerous multimedia productions, most notably with innovative dance-theater troupe
dance imprints. At Bang on a Can's Summer Residency, he played with genre-busting musicians
Don Byron and Iva Bittová. Mr. Friend is also a founding member of TRANSIT, a
Brooklyn-based new-music collective.
Upcoming concerts include those for Issue Project Room and the MATA festival, with
TRANSIT, in addition to solo engagements and the pilot of a new workshop for young pianists
on extended technique and contemporary programming at McNeese State University in
Multi-instrumentalist, singer, composer, and instrument designer Mark Stewart (electric
guitar) has been heard worldwide performing old and new music. Since 1998, he has recorded,
toured, and served as Paul Simon's musical director. A founding member of the Bang on a Can
All-Stars, Mr. Stewart is also a member of Steve Reich and Musicians, the Fred Frith Guitar
Quartet, Arnold Dreyblatt's Orchestra of Excited Strings, Zeena Parkins's Gangster Band,
and the manic duo Polygraph Lounge with keyboard and theremin wizard Rob Schwimmer.
Mr. Stewart has worked with Anthony Braxton, Bob Dylan, Charles Wourinen, Cecil Taylor,
Meredith Monk, Stevie Wonder, Phillip Glass, Hugh Masakela, Iva Bittová, Bruce Springsteen,
Bobby McFerrin, Ornette Coleman, the New York Philharmonic, Edie Brickell, Don Byron, Paul
McCartney, the Everly Brothers, Alison Krauss, David Byrne, James Taylor, The Roches, Marc
Ribot, and Simon & Garfunkel. He has also collaborated with choreographers Eliot Feld,
Susan Marshall, and Yoshiko Chuma, and worked extensively with composer Elliot Goldenthal
on music for the feature films The Tempest, Across the Universe, Titus, The Butcher
Boy, The Good Thief, In Dreams, and Heat, often playing instruments of his
own design and construction.
Mr. Stewart's Lower East Side "lab" in New York City is home to an instrument workshop and
sonic salon, which houses traditional, neglected, and original instruments. He can be heard
on Warner Brothers, Sony, Sony Classical, Point/Polygram, Nonesuch, Label Bleu, Resonance
Magnetique, Cantaloupe, and CRI recordings.
Clarinetist Evan Ziporyn has toured the globe with the Bang on a Can All-Stars since 1992.
He is also Founder and Artistic Director of Gamelan Galak Tika, a Boston-based Balinese
music and dance troupe devoted to new works by American and Balinese composers. With Galak
Tika, he has presented his groundbreaking Balinese-Western fusion works in venues as
diverse as New York's Zankel Hall and the Balinese International Arts Festival.
Mr. Ziporyn is the recipient of the 2007 USA Artists Walker Fellowship and the 2004
American Academy of Arts and Letters Goddard Lieberson Award. His music has been
commissioned and performed by Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Project, Kronos Quartet, Wu Man,
American Composers Orchestra, American Repertory Theater (their acclaimed Oedipus
Rex of 2004), Maya Beiser, and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, with whom he
recorded his 2006 orchestral CD, Frog's Eye. His works have been released on
Cantaloupe, Sony Classical, New Albion, New World, Koch, Innova, and CRI; his 2001 solo
clarinet CD, This Is Not a Clarinet, made numerous top-10 lists, and was featured
on All Things Considered and PRI's The World. He has also recorded for
Nonesuch (Steve Reich's New York Counterpoint and the Grammy Award-winning Music for 18
Musicians), Thirsty Ear, and Point.
Mr. Ziporyn has also provided the soundtrack for the PBS film Tailenders, and his
playing was featured in Tan Dun's soundtrack for the film Fallen. With the
All-Stars, a partial list of collaborators includes Brian Eno, Ornette Coleman, Thurston
Moore, Meredith Monk, Iva Bittová, Philip Glass, Terry Riley, Don Byron, Louis Andriessen,
Cecil Taylor, Henry Threadgill, Wayan Wija, Kyaw Kyaw Naing, and Pamela Z. He has also
recorded with Paul Simon, Matthew Shipp, So Percussion, and Ethel.
The Kenan Sahin Distinguished Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mr.
Zipoyrn has two children, Leo (age 14) and Ava (age 7). His opera, A House in
Bali, featuring the All-Stars and a full Balinese gamelan, was recently
premiered in Bali and Berkeley.
Jody Elff (sound engineer) is an audio engineer, sound artist, musician, and composer. Mr.
Elff has had the pleasure of working in some of the most unusual musical and sonic
environments imaginable. He has worked with Laurie Anderson, Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble,
Paul Winter, Hall & Oates, Paul Simon, and many others. In addition, he has mixed
countless televised concert events.
Mr. Elf scored the feature-length film All the Wrong Places, and is the resident
sound designer for the National Theater of the United States of America. His work with
sonic environments has led him to develop a series of sound art works that have been
presented at international museums and galleries. In 2002, he was commissioned to create a
permanent sound art installation for a public parking garage in Lyon, France, which opened
in October 2004.
James Findlay (scenic designer) works across multiple specialties as a designer, director,
performer, and creator with a constellation of theater, performance, and music groups in
New York City. He is a founding member and primary collaborator in both the experimentally
groundbreaking Collapsable Giraffe and the successful music-media performance ensemble
Accinosco / Cynthia Hopkins. Mr. Findlay has also been an associate member of The Wooster
Group since 1994. He also frequently works with Ridge Theater, most recently designing
Lightning at Our Feet at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Other notable designs
include Success of Failure by Cynthia Hopkins at St. Ann's Warehouse (Brooklyn),
Saving the Princess by choreographer Ralph Lemon at the Lyon Opera, and Slug
Bearers of Kayrol Island at the Vineyard Theater.
Mr. Findlay's awards include the Henry Hewes Design Award, Lucille Lortel Award, Princess
Grace Award, Obie Awards in 2001 and 2008, and Bessie Awards in 1999 and 2008.
Joshua Higgason-technical director and assistant designer-is a creator and builder of
multimedia theater productions. He is the technical director for and tours with The
Builders Association and Latitude 14. He has designed video and audio at HERE, The
Atlantic, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, The Public, The Flea, Manhattan Theatre Club, and
others. He has designed lights for NYCLU, Billy the Mime, and numerous theater shows and