Baltimore’s 12th Annual High Zero Festival of Experimental Improvised Music Again Set to Organize Chaos
"High Zero Festival is the premier showcase for spontaneous sound." NPR
“An utterly confounding yet utopian vision of musical possibilities.” Wire
High Zero is the premier festival of Improvised, Experimental music on the East Coast, being fully devoted to new collaborations between the most inspired improvisors from around the world.
“A fertile laboratory of musical possibility without equal.” Signal to Noise
The festival brings together 28 core musicians each year, but also involves a much larger subculture of musicians in Baltimore and on the East Coast. Musicians play sets of improvised music alongside improvisers they are often meeting for the very first time on stage. Unlike many related festivals, High Zero is not narrow in terms of sensibility or subculture, but rather widely inclusive of all the different types of experimental music-making in the moment.
“The continent’s finest four days of all-in improv and otherwise musical exploration.” City Paper
"Baltimore is becoming a crucible for serious experimental music produced outside of academia and concert halls." ArtPapers
The fact that half of the festival's core participants are from Baltimore speaks to the depth of Baltimore's experimental music subculture, which in recent years has grown to be one of the richest cities in the country for experimental art.
“Best Music Festival” City Paper and Baltimore Magazine
"A striking glimpse into the avant-garde and a creative process limited only by the imagination." Baltimore Sun
The festival has a unique structure. HIGH ZERO is focused solely on new collaborations in freely improvised experimental music. Internationally famous musicians play side by side with younger "unknowns," united by their commitment to the musical imagination. Each year, Baltimore becomes a fertile meeting-ground for a large group of inspired players, drawn from a fascinating international subculture.
"Could there possibly be a better place for a festival of cutting edge, improvised music than Baltimore?" Washington Post
The festival exposes large audiences to this radical music in its pure form. Large-scale public concerts, recording sessions, workshops, and guerrilla street performances are all part of the heady mix. The players are carefully selected by the festival's organizers for their intense, unique music, whether it is based around dramatic intensity, humor, specially designed instruments, original approach, raw sound, or nearly superhuman instrumental technique. The resulting collaborations challenge the limits of music and delight by their audacity, expressiveness, immediacy, and innovation. It isn't about stars or established projects; it is about the most uncompromising and stimulating new improvised music we can bring together.
High Zero Festival of Experimental Improvised Music
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