Symbiotics Quartet: Brown-Davis-Rivero-Trammell

Sunday, February 6, 2022 — 4:00 PM
Tickets: $15 General, $10 Members & Students
Buy Tickets Online

This event will be held in person at the Center for New Music.

Please note:

  • Masks are required for all in attendance.
  • Attendees are required to be fully vaccinated.
  • Audience capacity is reduced, so purchase your tickets early!


A quartet of internationally renowned improvisor/composers plays together in concert for the first time. The players are Chris Brown, piano and electronics; Ben Davis, cello; Danishta Rivero; and Marshall Trammell, drums. The musicians will employ a simple algorithm to play one all of the possible combinations of solos, duos, trios, and a quartet. In their group improvisations the focus is always on continuous listening and interdependence of the music created spontaneously by every player.

The Artists

BEN DAVIS, cellist. After training in classical cello and composition at the Guildhall, London, Ben spent two years touring with Cardiff based Earthfall Dance devising and performing the music for two shows. On returning to London he pursued his love of jazz and improvisation playing with Django Bates Delightful Precipice, Julian Joseph’s the Forum Project and the Mike Westbrook Big Band.Following gigs with Evan Parker, Louis Moholo, Vincent Courtois and Wadada Leo Smith, Ben developed a taste for a more freer approach to improvisation consequently touring and recording extensively with Ingrid Laubrock, Simon Nabatov and his own group Basquiat Strings which collaborated with Ellery Eskerlin and was nominated for the prestigious Mercury Prize.

CHRIS BROWN is a composer, pianist, and electronic musician, who makes music with acoustic and electroacoustic instruments, interactive software, computer networks, microtonal tunings, and improvisation. His compositions are designs for performances in which people bring to life the musical structures embedded in scores, instruments, and machines. His music is available on New World, F’oc’sle Music, Tzadik, Pogus, Intakt, Ecstatic Peace, Red Toucan, Leo, and Artifact Recordings. He has recorded music by Henry Cowell, Luc Ferrari, José Maceda, John Zorn, Glenn Spearman, and Wadada Leo Smith; recordings as an improvisor include with Pauline Oliveros, the Rova Saxophone Quartet, Fred Frith, William Winant, and Frank Gratkowski.

DANISHTA RIVERO is an improviser, performer, and sound artist based in Oakland, California. Heavily processing her voice with analog electronics, she explores the resulting artifacts and their relationship to the voice’s resonance and embodiment.

She is a member of electro-acoustic duo Voicehandler with percussionist Jacob Felix Heule. She is also half of Las Sucias, a feminist tropical noise duo with Alexandra Buschman-Román.


Oakland-based, CA, MARSHALL TRAMMELL is a composer, archivist, sound installation designer, percussionist and self-styled Music Research Strategist. development. He performs with In Defense of Memory, with Laura Ortman (White Mountain Apache) & Carlos Santistevan (mestizo), White People Killed Them with Raven Chacon (Navajo) & John Dietrich (white), and with Aaron Turner (white) & Tashi Dorji (Bhutan).
Known for past projects such as Mutual Aid Project, Black Spirituals, has worked with David Murray, Pauline Oliveros, India Cooke, Roscoe Mitchell, Joe MacPhee, Saul Williams, Lisa E. Harris, Genny LIm, Francis Wong, John Jang, Susan Alcorn, Daniel Carter, Ada Pinkston, Luke Stewart, Jamal Moore, Kade Twist, Bruce Ackely, Thurston Moore and others.
Productions include the commissioned premiere of “The Moon Is Down: The Status Quo Is My Enemy” for the Borealis Festival (Bergen, Norway) in March 2022, “Eleven Postures: for Burn the Temples/Break Up Bells” (Borealis premiere:film), directed by Matt Volla, and “Eleven Postures” (audio) produced by Jacob Felix Huele on SIGE Records (Seattle).
Trammell has received support from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Borealis Festival, Charlotte Street Foundation, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Southern Exposure, Intercultural Leadership Fellow (US: 2018-19), Western Front (Vancouver, BC), Pro Arts COMMONS, Prelinger Library , SF Contemporary Jewish Museum, Bergen Kunsthalle (Norway), and EastSide Arts Alliance.

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