The Norwegian origin Punkt is an extraordinary festival that is based on live remixes, where artists experiment with the music that seems interesting to them, no matter the genre.
The Norwegian origin Punkt is an extraordinary festival that is based on live remixes, where artists experiment with the music that seems interesting to them, no matter the genre. The festival concept is centered round a stage/studio hybrid called the Alpha Room. This room is an extension of how the curators of the festival, Jan Bang and Erik Honoré, have worked with a range of Nordic and international improvisational artists over the last years; with live sampling and live electronics, and as record producers and remixers. Regular concert formats will be followed by the remixes of the concerts just heard. In the Alpha Room the concerts on the main stage are remixed, and the audience may listen to the remixes immediately after each concert. In some cases, the remixers also invite musicians to interact with the remixes, making the Alpha Room an environment for innovation and improvisation.
During its six years of existence, the Punkt Festival has achieved a reputation that far exceeds its size. This has led to guest appearances with the whole Punkt concept in Moers and Düsseldorf, and in London, where Punkt UK was arranged for three nights at Kings Place, invited by the London Jazz Festival. This year Punkt visits Tallinn – European Culture Capital of 2011.
At Punkt Tallinn one can hear improvisational jazz but also choral music. On the two-day event such musicians from Norway and Estonia will perform as Sidsel Endresen, Eivind Aarset, Arve Henriksen, Jan Bang, Erik Honore, Weekend Guitar Trio, Segakoor Noorus with the music of Veljo Tormis, ensemble U: et al.
The musical spheres that Jan Bang works in revolve around such luminaries as Jon Hassell, David Sylvian, Brian Eno, Sidsel Endresen, Nils Petter Molvær and Arve Henriksen. From his work as successful pop producer in the 1990s, his creative thrust and pioneering work in developing the concept of live remix – improvising with electronics alongside more conventional instruments and performers – has led to him being constantly in-demand as a producer and performer today.
Erik Honoré is the artistic director of Punkt together with Jan Bang. He has produced albums of many intriguing Norwegian musicians. As a remixer he has worked with such characters as Arve Henriksen, Nils Petter Molvær, Christian Wallumrød, David Sylvian, Peter Schwalm/Brian Eno, Eivind Aarset, Velvet Belly and Unni Wilhelmsen. He has also created music for plays and also for movies.
Sidsel Endresen has been at the forefront of the Nordic music-scene for more than two decades. Her work has spanned genres from “fusion” and “jazz-rock” in the -80’s – to free improvisation and “new music” in the -90’s and the new millennium. She is today considered a major influence on a whole new generation of singers and has worked extensively with the voice as solo-instrument – and has developed her own, distinctive vocal improvisational style, and her own abstact, phonetic “language” based on her exploratio of the pure sound-aspect of the human voice.
Eivind Aarset is a guitarist with a unique musical vision that absorbs and reflects all manner of music while retaining an enviable individualism and high quality craftsmanship that can span from quiet intimacy to searing intensity. His debut as a bandleader on Jazzland Recordings was described by The New York Times as “One of the best post-Miles electric jazz albums,” setting a high benchmark that Aarset has consistently met and exceeded, both in the studio and in live performance.
Arve Henriksen has worked with many musicians familiar to ECM listeners. The trumpeter has played in a wide spectre of contexts, ranging from working with koto player Satsuki Odamura, to the rock band Motorpsycho via numerous free improvising groups. Today he is working with Supersilent, Christian Wallumrød Ensemble and Trygve Seim Ensemble. He has been inspired by all sorts of folk music, but is now interested to work with more contemporary and composed music. He has also spent time on electronics and different treatments on the trumpet.
Weekend Guitar Trio is an electric guitar trio that produces composed and improvised music for electric guitars and live electronics, influenced by jazz, electronic and world music. Their unorthodox sound combines the improvisation of modern jazz and the traditional music of various world cultures. WGT has recorded seven albums and performed at many jazz and new music festivals worldwide.
U: is a group of six players that works without a conductor; dedicated to contemporary music. The members of the ensemble are outstanding young musicians; many of them have been supplementing themselves on modern music in abroad. The ensemble works actively to broaden the idea of different types of scores as sources of music (graphical scores, video, text etc.). The ensemble has also been responsible for commissioning new music from Estonian and foreign composers.
Veljo Tormis is an Estonian composer, regarded to be one of the greatest living choral composers and one of the most important composers of the 20th century in Estonia. Internationally, his fame arises chiefly from his extensive body of choral music, which exceeds 500 individual choral songs, most of it a cappella. The great majority of these pieces are based on traditional ancient Estonian folksongs (regilaulud), either textually, melodically, or merely stylistically.
Segakoor Noorus is an Estonian mixed choir with long traditions. Noorus consists of about 35 singers; their common ground is high passion for music, especially choral music. Their repertoire consists of folk and Estonian choral pieces as well as world masterpieces, but also some popular music. Over the years the choir has won many choral prizes and many Estonian composers have written music especially for Noorus.