Christina Braun and Tom Nunn perform “What are the Chances”

Sunday, November 15, 2020 — 8:00 PM
Tickets: FREE with $10-20 suggested donation to be split between C4NM and the artists

This concert is dedicated to the memory of Rebecca Ellen Braun.

Broadcast on YouTube Live. CLICK ON THIS LINK:

This concert is free with $10-20 suggested donation to be split between C4NM and the artists.

Christina Braun performs six dances with the music of Tom Nunn. Underlying the dance and music is the idea of chaos and our human response to it. Instruments newly born and without a history offer a unique “field of play” where the random can subvert the purpose. Improvised dance born from Butoh and Duncan modern dance techniques may express intention emerging from chaos. Christina and Tom have performed together in SF Bay Area festivals since 2012. This is their third evening length concert. They are currently creating a dance film.

What are the Chances
Christina Braun, dance
Tom Nunn, music

“Roulette” [Skatchwheel – motorized]

“Beast of Doubt” [Skatchplate w/ reverb]

“In Your Dreams” [Crustacean, open]

“A Roundabout Way” [Skatchwheel – hand-turned]

“Another Kind of Creature” [Crustacean, muted]

“Relatively Relational” [Skatchplate]

About the Artists
Christina Braun is a lifelong dancer and prolific choreographer. She has studied for over twenty years with international masters in the Isadora Duncan and Butoh modern dance forms, including local treasures, the Tamanos. Christina’s solo dance works with composer David Samas have been presented by Safehouse Arts, the LAB, the Oakland Museum of California and the Asian Art Museum. As SF Butoh LAB, Christina has produced Butoh dance symposia, performances, and workshops.

Tom Nunn has designed, built and performed with experimental musical instruments since 1975, always with a focus on recycled/re-purposed materials, to create a unique voice in improvised music. He has participated in several festivals such as the High Zero Festival in Baltimore, Sound Symposium in Newfoundland, and AK07 in New Zealand.

In this program, three types of original invented instruments are used:
Giant Skatchwheel: A 33” diameter circular sheet of cardboard onto which are glued five different kinds of elements: flat wood (coffee stirrer sticks), round wood (3/16” wood dowel), flat metal (various size zinc washers), round metal (3/16” bronze brazing rod) and textured surface (non-skid self-adhesive tape – 3M Safety Walk). The wood and surface elements are painted various colors. 1-1/4” segments of these elements (and washers) are placed along concentric tracks (like the tracks of a record) in various patterns – some tracks are all one type of element, some have two, or three, etc. When the Skatchwheel is placed on a turntable (minus tone arm) and “skatched” using specially shaped soft plastic combs and comb “heads” on long sticks, a variety of textures and rhythmic patterns are elicited. In addition to varying the speed of the turntable – which affects pitch – techniques manipulating the angles of the combs with wrists and fingers on three axes (like a joystick) provide rich timbral and rhythmic variations. Two such Skatchwheels are used in this performance. A mic is positioned beneath for further amplification.

Skatchplate: A folded sheet of cardboard forming a thin triangle onto which are glued plastic combs as well as the five elements described above in various layouts. Again, these elements are “skatched” using different specifically “shaped” plastic combs, and the playing techniques are similar to those used on the Skatchwheel. The playing surface presents at a slight angle to the player, somewhat like a podium. Contact mics (pickups) are placed on the underside of the playing surface for amplification. Two Skatchplates are used in this performance; one also utilizes reverb.

Crustacean [Generically “Space Plate”]: A 32-1/4” diameter sheet of stainless steel onto one side of which are attached various lengths, diameters and shapes of bronze brazing rod. The plate rests on three inflated 11” toy balloons in cardboard paint buckets. A special stand accommodating (and stabilizing) the three buckets position the Crustacean at a waist level height. The rods are bowed with small violin bows to produce a variety of tones (sounding like voices or brass or strings, depending on which harmonics of the rod are excited). The rods are arranged on the plate to maximize bowing access using curved trajectories (like the curved top of a violin bridge that allows access to one string at a time). A mic is positioned beneath for further amplification.

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