Exquisite Departures – NOW Magazine


The Music Gallery presents Exquisite Departures, part of the Departures Series curated by Tad Michalak. 7 pm, Nov 20. www.musicgallery.org/live

At a time when live concerts have come to a halt The Departures Series, which typically presents off site concerts featuring touring acts, has re-imagined it’s approach to musical collaboration. In an aim to spur the kind of creative interactions improvisers & video artists often manifest in the live realm in a safe and engaging way, The Departures Series has embarked on a new adaptation of an age old game, Exquisite Corpse.

Pioneered and popularized by French surrealists in the 20’s & 30’s, the game typically involves either illustration or text. One artist starts an image and passes it along to a second, who only seeing a small portion of the previous collaborator’s contribution continues the illustration, then passes it on to a third artist, so on and so forth.

For Exquisite Departures we’ve invited 15 Toronto based improvisers and 6 video artists to play an audio / visual version of this game over 15 recorded tracks. Each musician was only able to listen to 10-15 seconds of the previous recording before adding their contribution to this collective improvisation. Similarly visual artists were only able to view a small snippet of video before jumping into the process. With a small taste in which to catch the essence, vibe and feel of any particular track musicians and artists relied on their improvisational intuition, a muscle often flexed in the live arena, to contribute to these evolving compositions. These free flowing surrealist music videos capture a playfully collaborative snapshot of Toronto’s creative music & video scene in a time of physical distance.

The audio will be released on our Live At The Music Gallery platform on the final Bandcamp Friday of 2020, December 4, 2020 www.musicgallery.bandcamp.com

Exquisite Departures features contributions by Germaine Liu (percussion),
Allison Cameron (electronics / toys / ukulele), Colin Fisher (electric guitar),
Araz Salek (tar), Adam Hanrahan (electric bass / oscillator), Mira Martin-Gray (no input mixer), Amahl Arulanandam (cello), Yunjin Claire Lee (piano / synthesizer / electronics), Cheldon Paterson aka Slowpitchsound (turntables / electronics), Andrew Zukerman (electronics), Heather Saumer  (trombone / voice / objects / piano),  Alia O’Brien (flute), Mike Smith (six string electric bass), Karen Ng (saxophone / clarinet) and Mani Mazinani (synthesizer / harmonica).