Vito Ricci + Szpety

NYC-based composer performs with Warsaw-based trio


18 April 2019, 7.30pm
Cafe OTO
18–22 Ashwin Street
London E8 3DL

Szpety is a Warsaw-based trio of Antonina Nowacka, Gosia Zagajewska and Wojtek Kurek. Their music could be described as oniric and minimalistic, referring to the avant-garde theater & psychoacoustic audial phenomenons. It’s based on vocal improvisations, drums and electronics. Antonina and Gosia first met in Warsaw’s Teatr Powszechny where they took part in sound workshops organized by Ray Dickaty (Warsaw Improvisers Orchestra). They both quickly got interested in experimenting with their voices and set out to perform live with Kasia Smoluk-Moczydłowska (Księżyc). Sometime later they invited Wojtek Kurek to join them during a concert in Warsaw. That event could be traced as the beginning of Szpety.

The recording of Szpety’s debut album took place in the basements of pokamedulski church in Warsaw. “We pay big attention to our surroundings and we knew from the very beginning that we won’t be using a traditional recording studio for this project,” says Kurek. “Church basements have some amazing acoustics. The music there flows through walls, its acoustics shape the sounds in a very specific way. We were allowed to explore these basements for the whole day and our steps, interactions with objects laying around and outside sounds – all of this contributed to the music. This is our sound interpretation of the space". Szpety's debiut album was released November 2018 on Instant Classic’s new sublabel Ersatz Recordings.

Vito Ricci's leading edge instinct and creativity have made him a vital and prolific composer of illuminating and compelling works. Infused with poignancy and honesty, his music has the power to linger in the listener's memory. An artist who has been called " composer of wide ranging and obsessively fascinating collection of works" by the Wire, and his soundtracks compared to "heirloom seeds put back in circulation" by Pitchfork and "elegant and snappy" by the New York Times. Vito Ricci has been on the leading edge of the downtown music scene since 1979.

During his thirty-year-plus career, Mr. Ricci has scored over fifty productions including concert music, theater, dance, performance, film and video. His collaborative works include partnerships with Bob Holman, Martin Goldray, Rashied Ali, Flux Quartet, Jacob Burkhardt, Lise Vachon, and The Woster Group. Performances of his works have been presented at The Skyball Theater, The Public Theater, La MaMa Theater, Greenwich Music House, Cooper Union, Roulette, The Knitting Factory, St. Marks Church, The Performing Garage, the Walker Arts Center and the Southern Theater, both in Minneapolis.

Mr. Ricci has been the recipient of grants from ASCAP, Meet The Composer, The National Endowment For The Arts and Queens Council on the Arts. Mostly self-taught, he has studied briefly with Ursula Mamlok, Eleanor Cory and Ornette Coleman, and has released CDs of solo piano music, electronic works, song cycles, improvisations and string quartets...

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