James Tenney: Resistance

Concert , Panel in X Avant XII: Resistance Series

The Music Gallery presents
James Tenney: Resistance
+ Discussion (Basement Classroom): 6:30PM


For our final X Avant show, we dig into the groundbreaking work of composer James Tenney. Tenney, one-time Toronto resident and Music Gallery enthusiast, is widely considered to be one of the most important composers of the latter half of the 20th century. His music and ideas span an incredible range of interests and disciplines from early computer-generated music to medieval rounds to the elegant short form constructions of his beloved Postal Pieces. Tenney was also deeply concerned with social justice. Tonight’s program surveys almost 30 years of musical activism both in a historical and contemporary light.

Viet Flakes (1965) film by Carolee Schneemann, tape collage by James Tenney
Fabric For Che (1967)
Timbre Ring (1971) WORLD PREMIERE feat. Tanya Charles, David French, Louis Simao, Alejandro Cespedes, Allie Blumas, Alexis Baro, Elena Kapeleris, Ben Grossman.
Pika-Don (1991) feat. Nathan Pettipas, Alejandro Cespedes, Michelle Colton, Rich Burrows.
Listen…! (1981/84) feat. Mingjia Chen, Mara Nesrallah, Belinda Corpuz and Noah Franche-Nolan.

Like all political works, these compositions must be considered within historical and contemporary contexts. Please join us for a pre-show panel discussion exploring the composer’s intent vs. contemporary presentation of these pieces. What does it mean to be a socially conscious composer now as opposed to 20-30 years ago and what do audiences expect from socially conscious music?

The Music Gallery gratefully acknowledges the Lauren Pratt and Tashi Wada of the James Tenney Estate for their assistance with programming.

Panel Discussion (Basement Classroom): hosted by Bruce Russell, 6:30PM

WARNING: this concert contains violent images.


Please note that this venue has gendered washrooms and is not wheelchair-accessible (there are three steps to the entrance and a short flight of stairs up to the performance space, as well as down to the basement). The washrooms are located in the basement.

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