sfSound presents

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2020

Friday, January 10, 8:30pm
Saturday, January 11, 7:00pm
Saturday, January 11, 9:30pm
Sunday, January 12, 7:00pm

Victoria Theatre
2961 16th Street
San Francisco

$20 general ($10 Sat 9:30 concert)
$10 balcony/underemployed
$50 fest pass (general seating all concerts)

advance ticket purchase
or at the door (cash only) the day of show
(box office opens one hour before showtime)

America's only festival devoted to the performance of audio works projected in three-dimensional space, The San Francisco Tape Music Festival features four distinct concerts of classic audio art and new fixed media compositions by 35 local and international composers. Hear members of the SF Tape Music Collective, along with guest composers, shape the sound live over a pristine surround system (24 high-end loudspeakers) with the audience seated in complete darkness. It's a unique opportunity to experience music forming - literally - around you.

The 2020 Festival features contemporary “fixed media” compositions by eighteen international composers, including FRANCIS DHOMONT, NATASHA BARRETT, ROBERT NORMANDEAU, and BARRY TRUAX alongside tape classics by PIERRE SCHAEFFER, PAULINE OLIVEROS, and TORU TAKEMITSU. Bay area artists KENNETH ATCHLEY, BRUCE BENNETT, KYLE BRUCKMANN, BRAN(...)POS, THOM BLUM, CLIFF CARUTHERS, MATT INGALLS, DOUGLAS MCCAUSLAND, KRISTIN MILTNER, MICHELLE MOELLER, MAGGI PAYNE, and KEN UENO will also be presenting their works.

Saturday's 9:30pm concert features late-night-appropriate works that lean towards ambient and long-form-exploration.

In a special collaboration with SFSOUNDGROUP, the Sunday program features works for instruments and spatialized electronics, including the premiere of Ghosts of Ancient Hurricanes, a new comission by KEN UENO, the North American premiere of Force Fields by JONTY HARRISON, and DENIS SMALLEY'S classic Clarinet Threads.

The festival also pays tribute to electronic music pioneer MARIO DAVIDOVSKY (1934-2019) and "word jazz" sound artist KEN NORDINE (1920-2019).


Friday January 10, 2020 (8:30pm)
click here to download the PDF program
PIERRE SCHAEFFER - Étude aux casseroles [Pathétique] (1948)
PAULINE OLIVEROS - Poem of Change (1992)
BARRY TRUAX - The Garden of Sonic Delights (2016)
ROBERT NORMANDEAU - Tunnel azur (2016)
MAGGI PAYNE - Heat Shield (2018)
BRAN(...)POS - martian brine pool (2019)
CLIFF CARUTHERS - Cupido's Suitcase (2009)
MATTHEW BARNARD - Woche (with apologies to Ruttmann and Brock) (2011)
SANGWON LEE - Torturing Piano (2019)
:such: - Opaque Fragments (2017)

Saturday January 11, 2020 (7:00pm)
click here to download the PDF program
KEN NORDINE - Tick Tock Fugue (2011)
FRANCIS DHOMONT - Here and There (2003)
NATASHA BARRETT - Urban Melt in Park Palais Meran (2017)
THOM BLUM - To My Son Parker, Asleep in the Next Room (1996)
KRISTIN MILTNER - Mercey (2020)
CECILIA CASTRO (feat Astrosuka) - ROMA III: The Ruin (2018)
FELIPE OTONDO - Irama (2012)
LEAH REID - Sk(etch) (2018)
DANIELLE SAVAGE - Schizo Phonia (2018)
FULYA UÇANOK - Assembly (2017)

Saturday January 11, 2020 (9:30pm)
click here to download the PDF program
TORU TAKEMITSU - Vocalism Ai (1956)
KENNETH ATCHLEY - bay sky hills fog (2019)
BRUCE BENNETT - Stretch (2001)
SAVANNAH AGGER - Undercurrents (2016)
LÉA BOUDREAU - Quatre machines pour sauver le monde (2019)
NICOLA GIANNINI - Eyes Draw Circles of Light (2019)
TROND LOSSIUS - Listening understood as inhabiting (2015)

Sunday January 12, 2020 (7:00pm)
click here to download the PDF program
a special 3-set concert of works for instruments and fixed media featuring sfSoundGroup
MARIO DAVIDOVSKY - Synchronisms #2 (1964) (for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and tape)
MARIO DAVIDOVSKY - Synchronisms #3 (1964) (for cello and tape)
KEN UENO - Ghosts of Ancient Hurricanes (2019)
(for 6 winds, percussion, throat singer, 8 megaphones, microtonal metal pipes, and 4-channel tape -- WORLD PREMIERE COMMISSION BY SFSOUND)
JONTY HARRISON - Force Fields (2006)
(for chamber ensemble and 8-channel tape -- AMERICAN PREMIERE)
DENIS SMALLEY - Clarinet Threads (1985) (for clarinet and tape)
KYLE BRUCKMANN - Clutterfields (filthy quilt) (2019) (for oboe, bass clarinet, and laptop)
MATT INGALLS & SFSOUND - Blue Sedan (2020) (for closely-miced chamber ensemble, live processing, and tape)

Diane Grubbe, flutes     Kyle Bruckmann, oboe & english horn
Matt Ingalls, clarinets     John Ingle, saxophone, conductor
Tom Dambly, trumpet     Brendan Lai-Tong, trombone
Hadley McCarroll, piano     Kjell Nordeson, percussion
Benjamin Kreith, violin     Natalia Badziak, viola
Monica Scott, cello     Lisa Mezzacappa, bass
Ken Ueno, voice

equipment kindly provided by The Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) at Stanford University and sfSound.

Ken Ueno's commission funded in part by Intermusic SF's Musical Grant Program and The Amphion Foundation.

Co-promotion provided by the best radio station EVER, KFJC 89.7FM

Spot on KQED's "California Report" by Sam Harnett

Spot on KDFC's "State of the Art"

What is Tape Music??

It is a bit paradoxical to use the word traditionally with a practice of the avant garde -- but, traditionally the words tape music have referred to the target media of a new kind of music. This new kind of music is not composed for arbitration by a pianist and the piano, so it must not be piano music. . . not for the string quartet, not for the orchestra, not even for the rock band.

Music Composed for Tape.

The idea of a music composed for a fixed medium, while perhaps starting down a path, does not really lead us to a fundamentally new art. If the only criteria for differentiating tape music from all other musics is the fixed delivery medium -- magnetic tape, vinyl, CD, miniDisc -- then our thought has just led us to all industrialized forms of music, so called "popular" and "classical". When this is our only standard, we discover tape music is actually the foremost music of our time. The kids love it, the moms subdue their road-rage with it, the dads sing tunelessly with it, and so on.

But This Music May Not be Music.

The pieces we present transcend simplistic notions of music and its materials and its "instruments." The recording/playback media itself is treated not as a stand-in for an absent performer, a poor man's orchestra, but as a vital and unique territory for exploration/exploitation. They coexist in many worlds, blurring the line between composition, field recordings, sound design, "cinema for the ear," virtual [audio] reality, "radio" drama, and sound synthesis. This art form does not depend upon the posturing of performers. It does not worship the technology with which it was produced, nor does it fetishize the physical medium in which it is contained. There is nothing to see here! In the same way cinema is NOT theatre, tape music is NOT music.

sfSoundRadio is now playing many tape works from
our past concerts. TUNE IN NOW!

Past SFTMC concerts

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2019
January 4-6, 2019
READ: a preview by Joshua Kosman in the San Francisco Chronicle
READ: a review by Giacomo Fiore in the San Francisco Classical Voice

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2018
January 5-7, 2018

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2017
January 6-8, 2017
READ: a review by Giacomo Fiore in the San Francisco Classical Voice

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2016
January 8-10, 2016

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2015
January 9-12, 2015
READ: a review by Sam Lefebvre in the East Bay Express

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2014
January 3-5, 2014
READ: a review by J. Poet in the SFWeekly

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2013
January 25-27, 2013

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2012
January 20-22, 2012

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2011
January 7-9, 2011

Unravelling Tape An installation by the San Francisco Tape Music Collective
June 15-July 15, 2010

The San Francisco Tape Music Collective @ Mills College
November 9, 2009

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2009
January 30-February 1, 2009
READ: a review by Jonathan Russell in San Francisco Classical Voice

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2007
January 26-28, 2007

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival 2006
January 25-27, 2006

Cinema for the Ear: The San Francisco Tape Music Festival
January 20-22, 2005

The San Francisco Tape Music Festival
February 20-22, 2004

HEAR: Colin Berry's feature about the festival on NPR's California Report

San Francisco Electronic Music Festival
Sunday July, 27, 2003

READ: a review by David Bithell in Computer Music Journal

Strictly Ballroom Series
Thursday October, 23, 2003

Stanford University

The Tranparent Tape Music Festival II
8/16/2002 - 8/18/2002
a review by Tom Djll

The Tranparent Tape Music Festival
1/11/2002 & 1/12/2002
East Bay Express' Preview Article
READ: a review by Jonathan Segel in Computer Music Journal

a review by Mark Alburger in the SF Classical Voice & 21st Century Music

Big Sur Experimental Music Festival II

The East Bay Tape Music Festival 1 @ Art Rattan Warehouse

The San Francisco Tape Music Collective is dedicated to presenting performances of audioArt diffused through a surround-sound speaker environment.
The SFTMC and the SF Tape Music Festival is a project of sfSound

The San Francisco Tape Music Collective is
Joseph Anderson | Thom Blum | Cliff Caruthers
Matt Ingalls | Kent Jolly | Kristin Miltner | Maggi Payne

We are always looking for new works.
Click here for submission information.

:: contact us ::

Background image: a "diffusion score" for Edgard Varèse's Poème Électronique