As I wrote a few weeks ago, Zeitspace is a sponsor of the Open Ears Festival of Music and Sound, which wrapped up on Sunday. We’re proud to have been associated with the 20th anniversary edition of the festival. This post isn’t a review, though this year’s edition was an amazing musical experience. Instead, here are a few highlights that capture the breadth of intent for Open Ears.
Studio Dan, from Vienna Austria, create an amazing mix of jazz, classical, rock, and more. Last week they came to North America to perfom in just two cities: Philadelphia, and Kitchener as a part of Open Ears. At Open Ears it’s important to bring gifted musicians from around the world to perform in our region.
On Sunday morning there was a debut of a new piece of music by Katerina Gimon in which musicians performed in small groups in various locations at Victoria Park before moving to the island gazebo for the finale. At Open Ears it’s important to foster and showcase emerging composers by commissioning and performing new works.
Music for percussion quartet and string quartet were featured in the Night at the Museum concert, which was also a part of the downtown Kitchener festival presented as a part of Communitech’s True North event as well as QuartetFest. At Open Ears it’s important to build new audiences for the music and build bridges between communities.
The music of composer Jason Doell was the focus for a concert featuring the Nü Ears Ensemble, which includes some of the our region’s best musicians. The concert also launched a new album (in both physical and digital media forms) of Jason’s music. At Open Ears it’s important that local musicians be able to perform new music by renowned composers.
Onion Honey are a local group that make “folk music” and who played at an after-event gathering at TWH Social. In addition to their usual repertoire they inclued some lovely surprises for Open Ears folks, including covers of Laurie Anderson’s O Superman and Terry Riley’s iconic In C! At Open Ears, it’s important to create opportunities to mix and mashup musical genres.
Things that are important to Open Ears clearly align with things that are important to Zeitspace. As I wrote earlier: “Open Ears has been a consistent presenter and instigator of innovative programming that extends the boundaries of what a musical experience can be. Given the work that we do at Zeitspace designing and building great experiences for our innovative clients, Open Ears seemed like a natural fit for us.” This year’s festival was a wonderful affirmation of that.