Portland’s famously fertile musical community just can’t draw boundaries: experimental composers and sound artists dip their toes into populist waters, just as pop musicians brazenly borrow from the avant-garde. In all five quadrants of PDX, the realms of sonic possibility are giddy with cross-pollination. To capitalize on these unique confluences of energy, Megan Holmes and Claudia Meza began NEW MUSICS in late 2010. This young series invites Portland’s most exciting sound scientists and pop adventurers to collaborate with some of the city’s under-sung traditional music ensembles.

Claudia Meza is a Portland-based composer and performer who has written for and played in various bands, including Japanther and Explode Into Colors. Through a continuing collaboration with Portland Taiko, she has developed Mourning Youth, an in-progress wordless opera that debuted at TBA:10. This performance will also showcase the sound-processing talents of sound artist and composer Thomas Thorson (Tahni Holt, Interiors), choreography and movement by Seattle dancer Allie Hankins (Part & Parcel), and visuals by longtime collaborator and video artist Chris Hackett.

Selected Video


TBA 2010 Test Footage from Chris Hackett on Vimeo.

Liz Harris has been performing and recording under the name Grouper since 2005. PART is the third installment in an ongoing tape collage series, centered around exploration of the transitive spaces that exist in the divide between two objects: worlds, pairs, opposites. The composition will pair tape collage and live processing by Grouper with vocals by members of Flash Choir.

Tashi Wada is a composer and performer based in San Francisco. His recent work focuses on various aspects of sound perception as a basis for direct processes of listening. Wada’s work has been performed throughout the United States and Europe in a variety of venues, and for several years now he has performed
alongside his father, Yoshi Wada.