Welcome back to #wcw (aka Woman Crush Wednesday) on my blog for Women’s History Month! I’m featuring a musical artist every Wednesday who has inspired me and driven me to expand and develop my own art in new ways.
With my creative brain ever drawing me toward more improvisatory, experimental forms, I’ve been diving into the catalogue of trombonist and composer Monique Buzzarté.
Known not just as a composer and avant-garde performer, Ms Buzzarté is also a champion of works by women composers and an activist fighting for the recognition and fair hiring of women in musical jobs. She maintains a database of new music for trombone by women as well as her own impressive list of compositions for music, dance, and film.
A student of Stuart Dempster and a certified practitioner of Pauline Oliveros’ Deep Listening technique, Monique draws deeply from the well of broad, ethereal sounds, utilizing tape, electronics, delay, and other instruments to bring out the mystical sounds a trombone can produce in different environments. She has developed an interactive performance interface for the trombone that allows for live processing during her performances.
If you’ve never heard of the technique of Deep Listening before, it’s definitely worth your time to explore. Many composers and performers of DL offer expansive, meditative, multi-disciplinary experiences that are meant to open the mind and the spirit to new ideas and emotions.
There’s more to listening than meets the ear. Pauline Oliveros herself describes Deep Listening as “listening in every possible way to everything possible to hear no matter what one is doing.” Basically Deep Listening, as developed by Oliveros, explores the difference between the involuntary nature of hearing and the voluntary, selective nature – exclusive and inclusive — of listening. The practice includes bodywork, sonic meditations, interactive performance, listening to the sounds of daily life, nature, one’s own thoughts, imagination and dreams, and listening to listening itself. It cultivates a heightened awareness of the sonic environment, both external and internal, and promotes experimentation, improvisation, collaboration, playfulness and other creative skills vital to personal and community growth. Plus it’s a ton of fun.
To hear more of Ms Buzzarté’s work and performances, visit the music streaming store of your choice and search her name, or visit her website for physical copies.
Happy (deep) listening!