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With an array of contemporary musical styles that some have compared to the early career years of Kronos, Philip Glass, and Laurie Anderson, the Bang On A Can All-Stars will perform at 8 p.m. Tuesday, November 7 at the Williams Center for the Arts.

Tickets cost $18 and may be ordered by calling the Williams Center box office at 610-559-5009.

Before the concert, at 7 p.m. in Williams Center room 108, composer David Lang will give an informal presentation on the music to be performed. The talk is free and open to the public.

“A fiercely aggressive group, combining the power and punch of a rock band with the precision and clarity of a chamber ensemble,” writes The New York Times. According to The Boston Globe, the members of Bang On A Can All-Stars are “fabulous players…young, personable, exceedingly gifted, image conscious, and versatile.” The music is “radical…demands to be heard,” notes The Guardian, London.

The Bang On A Can All-Stars is the touring arm of the New York music group headed by composers David Lang, Julia Wolfe, and Michael Gordon, central within the vanguard of a new generation of composers intent on surmounting the traditional categories of “classics,” “jazz,” “rock,” and “world beat.” The music programmed for November 7 will straddle these many traditions and influences with the confident swagger of a new millennium, partaking of many musical ancestries and embracing the horizons of opportunity. Brian Eno’s cult work “Music for Airports” and Tan Dun’s “Music for Six Instruments” will be performed, as will compositions by David Lang, Julia Wolfe, Martin Bresnick, among others.

Since its inception in 1987, the Bang On A Can Festival has been discovering and presenting performers who are adventurous, virtuosic, dynamic and intense, who are equally at home with the diverse styles within music today. Six players in particular kept coming back. They were among the festival’s finest artists — six of the most accomplished performers of new music in the world. With these players the festival created the Bang On A Can All-Stars.

The current ensemble players are Robert Black, bass; David Cossin, percussion; Michael Lowenstein, clarinet; Scott Kuney, electric guitar; Lisa Moore, piano and keyboards; and Wendy Sutter, cello. Individually, they boast an uncommonly broad spectrum of professional credits, extending from John Cage and Mikhail Baryshnikov to the Klezmatics, Steve Reich, Yoshiko Chuma, and numerous of the contemporary art world’s most seminal figures in music, dance, theater, and the visual arts. Each is recognized as a virtuoso player, committed to stylistic exploration, ensemble experimentation, and musical discovery. Together, this ensemble of six players represents one of the finest contemporary music groups now touring.

The instrumentation of the group doesn’t seem to fit in any recognizable category. Part classical ensemble, part rock band, and part jazz band, it has a flexibility that represents the vision of the festival, whose artistic directors believe in the communicative power of a wide range of music from a new generation of composers and performers.

The Bang On A Can All-Stars’ first major collaboration as an ensemble came in 1989, and by 1991, collaborations among these players had become a regular feature of the Bang On A Can Festival. In 1992, Bang On A Can created a separate series of performances for its all-stars, and over the course of six seasons, they have established both a national and international reputation as premier pioneers of music from the cutting edge.

The 1993-94 season marked the group’s debut at Lincoln Center with two concerts in the Great Performers Series, which continued to present the band in subsequent seasons. Additional breakthroughs in 1994 included appearances at the Meltdown Festival at the South Bank Centre in London, the Holland Festival, and Tanglewood. In 1995, the Bang On A Can All-Stars saw its first CD, Industry, released on Sony Classical. Its second CD, Cheating, Lying, Stealing, also on Sony Classical, was released in April, 1996, and throughout these two seasons the group continued to perform an ever-expanding repertoire of boundary-smashing music with concerts in the U.S., U .K., Holland, Germany, New Zealand, and Australia, where it was in residence at the Adelaide.

Highlights over the next several years have included recording a CD of music of Steve Reich, and a week of performances with choreographer Eliot Feld at the Joyce Theater in New York City. The band has toured throughout the U.S. and Europe, and regularly performed to capacity audiences in venues such as Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, Royal Festival Hall in London, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, and others.

The 2000-2001 Performance Series at Lafayette is cosponsored, in part, by grants from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Mid Atlantic Foundation for the Arts.

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