From saxophonist and composer Angela Morris:
I’ve spent my pandemic time composing, blobbing, putting on shows for my series Brackish, recovering from two broken bones, teaching over zoom and in schools, protesting, and occasionally performing. Mostly trying to keep the emotional boat afloat!
In April 2020, Anna Webber and I released our big band’s debut record Both Are True. The album seems to have reached a lot of people, and it’s been a real gift to have it out there at a time when it’s easy to feel disconnected from musicianhood. In summer/fall 2021, the Webber/Morris Big Band got to play a couple of shows irl, which was magnificent. I wrote a new piece for the band that we debuted at our November concert at the Jazz Gallery.
I also had the opportunity to compose a bit of music for classical musicians. The fabulous violinist Monica Davis performed my solo violin piece, Ribbon:
There’s also a snippet for solo oboe that is not yet available for public consumption. Both of those connections were made by Gabriela Lena Fank Academy of Music, where I did a residency in 2019 – I encourage everyone to check them out, they’ve been doing a lot of great online programming through the pandemic.
A new quartet of mine, Medium Low, with Kalia Vandever, Luke Stewart and Jason Nazary had the chance to perform a few times, including this rooftop show commissioned by CU Jazz Fest. The collaborative trio Motel (with Nathaniel Morgan and Owen Stewart-Robertson) wrote a new piece and performed it at one of the many Prospect Park concerts of 2021. A few clips of that performance are online here.
Ochion Jewel and Cat Toren co-host a video/podcast interview and performance series called Brooklyn Living Room Sessions, and I was lucky enough to be a guest with them this past summer. Brackish, the concert series I’ve been running since 2016 (lately with the stellar team of Jaimie Branch and Starr Busby), put on a few outdoor shows in 2020 and a mix of indoor and outdoor in 2021. You can see a lot of the 2020 live shows plus videos we commissioned from various musicians in our 2020 Brackish Music & Arts Video Spectacular. Stay tuned for the 2021 Video Spectacular coming in Feb 2022!