Posts Tagged ‘ Whitmore Recital Hall

Composers Festival spotlight: Khemia Ensemble

Khemia Ensemble will play a prominent role during their Mizzou International Composers Festival debut this year, presenting three performances featuring works by a total of 16 different composers.

Founded and led by University of Missouri School of Music faculty members Carolina Heredia and Bret Bohman, and including Mizzou assistant professor of cello Eli Lara, Khemia (pictured) is “a contemporary chamber ensemble focused on championing the works of living composers through vivid, multimedia performances.”

Members of Khemia will be featured in two afternoon “pop-up” concerts in downtown Columbia, on Thursday, July 25 outside Sparky’s Homemade Ice Cream and on Friday, July 26 near Uprise Bakery, with the entire group set to perform in a matinee concert on Saturday, July 27 at Whitmore Recital Hall in the Fine Arts Building on the Mizzou campus.

Over the course of the three performances, they’ll play music by Heredia, Bowman, and 2019 MICF resident composer inti figgis-vizueta, as well as Andy Akiho, Lembit Beecher, Bjarne Brustad, John Cage, Chris Cerrone, Daniel Fawcett, Ellen Harrison, Tom Johnson, Bruno Mantovani, Patricia Martinez, Emma O’Halloran, Tim Peterson, and Heitor Villa-Lobos.

With an original lineup of musicians featuring members from four different countries – Argentina, Brazil, China, and the United States – Khemia brings diverse approaches to the music of a variety of living composers and to their stated mission, which is to “foster collaborations among the arts by working closely with designers, visual artists, and writers as well as incorporating poetic, visual, and interactive elements in our performances.”

The ensemble’s collective interest in multimedia led to the creation several years ago of “Khemia Lights,” an installation devised in a collaboration between Bret Bohman and Intermedio, a Cincinnati-based sound and visual production company. Employing “audio-visual technology that responds live to the rhythm and intensity of the music we are performing, creating an exciting multi-sensory experience for the audience,” the lighting system has been used as part of interactive concerts in Cincinnati, Ann Arbor and Detroit.

Khemia Ensemble has been featured in venues and festivals such as National Sawdust, Strange Beautiful Music in Detroit, the third annual New Music Gathering, Latin IS America at Michigan State University and the Biennial New Music Festival at the National University of Cordoba.

They also have had residencies at University of Michigan, Tufts University, Michigan State University, the National University of Bogota and the National University of Cordoba, as well as two consecutive years at Avaloch Farms.

You can check out recordings of some past Khemia Ensemble performances in the embedded players below.

“Negative Image/Fragil,” composed by Carolina Heredia and Natali Herrera, recorded May 3, 2018 at National Sawdust in New York City

“Visual Abstract” by Pierre Jalbert, recorded in September 2017 at Strange Beautiful Music X in Detroit, MI

“Ear, Skin, and Bone Riddles (excerpt)” by Marcus Balter, recorded in September 2016 at Distler Hall, Tufts University, in Medford, MA, featuring Amy Petrongelli (soprano), Lauren Pulcipher (violin), and Horacio Contreras (cello)

2019 Mizzou International Composers Festival adding
more concerts, offering free admission to all events

Khemia Ensemble

For its tenth year, the Mizzou International Composers Festival (MICF) in 2019 is adding five more concerts and an audio installation, and is making all MICF events free and open to the public.

Presented by the Mizzou New Music Initiative and the University of Missouri School of Music from Monday, July 22 through Saturday, July 27 in Columbia, the MICF once again will feature three evening concerts at the Missouri Theatre.

Resident ensemble Alarm Will Sound will perform on Thursday, July 25, followed by “Mizzou New Music” on Friday, July 26 and “Eight World Premieres” on Saturday, July 27. All three of those concerts, which in past years have been ticketed events, will be free this year.

The new events for 2019, also all free and open to the public, will include post-concert performances at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at Cafe Berlin, 220 N. 10th St. (about eight blocks from the Missouri Theatre).

From left: Bels Lontano, Eli Keszler

Thursday’s performance will feature Bels Lontano playing electronic works by Mizzou student composers and MICF resident composers. On Friday, the MICF will team with Columbia community arts organization Dismal Niche to present a performance by percussionist and composer Eli Keszler.

The other three concerts added for the festival’s tenth year involve Khemia Ensemble, the group led by Mizzou assistant professor of composition Carolina Heredia and her husband Bret Bohman, who’s also a composer and adjunct faculty member.

Musicians from the ensemble will present informal “pop-up” concerts at 1:00 p.m. Thursday on 9th St. near Sparky’s Ice Cream, 21 S. 9th St, and at 1:00 p.m. Friday at Uprise Bakery, 10 Hitt St. The full Khemia Ensemble then will perform in a matinee concert at 11:00 a.m. Saturday at Whitmore Recital Hall on the Mizzou campus.

Lastly, a sound installation by Alarm Will Sound audio engineer and technical director Daniel Neumann and musician Kenneth Kirschner will be running in the second floor lobby of the Missouri Theatre throughout the festival. As yet untitled, the installation will feature eight channels of audio delivering algorithm-generated soundscapes based on samples of extended instrumental techniques performed by members of Alarm Will Sound.

A complete schedule of events, times, dates and venues for the 2019 Mizzou International Composers Festival will be available on the festival’s website at

The culmination of the MICF is Saturday’s concert featuring world premieres of new works written by each of the festival’s eight resident composers and performed by Alarm Will Sound. The resident composers for 2019 are:

* Theophilus Chandler, Houston TX
* Inti Figgis-Vizueta, Brooklyn NY
* Charles Halka, Bellingham WA
* Chelsea Komschlies, Philadelphia PA
* Aaron Mencher, Columbia MO
* Nicole Murphy, Brisbane, Australia
* Peter Shin, New Haven CT
* Kristina Wolfe, Huddersfield, UK

In celebration of the festival’s tenth year, Donnacha Dennehy and Amy Beth Kirsten will return to the MICF to serve as the two distinguished guest composers for 2019, teaching and consulting with the resident composers and ensemble.

Dennehy is the founder of the Irish new music group Crash Ensemble and an associate professor of music at Princeton University. He previously was a guest composer at the MICF in 2012. Kirsten is a member of the composition faculty of the Longy School of Music of Bard College, and was part of the festival’s first group of resident composers in 2010.

A complete schedule of events, times, dates and venues for the 2019 Mizzou International Composers Festival will be available on the festival’s website at