performance

Each night Monkey Town Los Angeles includes weekly performance residencies by Los Angeles and national artists. They perform inside the cube, halfway through the video program, accompanied by video.

Performers

October 7 – 12
Weyes Blood

weyesActive in underground music since 2006, Natalie Mering has collaborated with Jackie-O Motherfucker and Ariel Pink, and released four records as Weyes Blood. Front Row Seat to Earth is her third record for Mexican Summer.

The first thing you notice about Weyes Blood’s new album, is its closeness. The music is immediate and warm with intimate feeling. This disarming nearness draws out emotion from the album’s sound in evocative, bold color. The lyrics serve not to obscure and mystify, but to perform, reveal, and take the listener inside. This is the folk music of the near future.

Natalie Mering, the being behind Weyes Blood, sings sublimely on Front Row. These are her words and she means them. Between the subtle pulses of her breath, we feel the textures of her voice. Her delivery is a trained low gloss, polished with the charm of speech. Mering embeds her song in a harmonic gauze of arpeggiated piano, acoustic guitar, druggy horns, and outer space electronics. Propulsive, spare drums carry us across the album’s course.

PAST Performers

June 1 – 5
Opera on Tap

OperaOnTapLAFounded in Brooklyn in 2005, Opera on Tap is a national nonprofit with 16 chapters across the country with a mission to break down the stereotype that opera is a stuffy or elitist art form by bringing it to bars and other non-traditional venues — like Monkey Town. Local professional opera singers let their hair down and bring you into what feels like an after hours backstage party, singing opera’s best known pieces, as well as deeper cuts, in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere – often with a drink in hand!

Monkey Town has hosted opera performances in Denver (Opera on Tap), Barcelona (a Ukrainian soprano discovered singing at the Barcelona Cathedral), and Austin (Local Opera Local Artists — LOLA). The experience of professional opera singers performing arias 5 or 10 feet away from you is a rare and superhuman offering. Conversions and tears are not uncommon.


June 7 – 19
Dallas ACID

aciddallasAfter almost 15 years of creating soundtracks to aid space travelers, including the modern classic “Odeon” for Olde English Spelling Bee, DA returns with a new lineup which includes former members of Golden Animals, Vietnam & the Prima Donnas. 

On tour supporting their upcoming release Original Soundtrack on Flying Moonlight records, Dallas Acid — the seminal cosmic synth-scape outfit — pilots you on a deep space journey, diving into washes of shifting sound waves and through the burning growls and screaming white noise of uncharted anomalies.

Rhythms of primordial ritual carry you past warped melodies breaking apart in the gravitational pull, through trickling oscillator fluctuations burning like cinders. Experience purification through fire, a cleansing of the soul in the deep warmth of the sun.


June 21 – 27

White Magic

whitemagicfullWhite Magic is artist, vocalist, and composer Mira Billotte, performing with accompaniment or solo, traveling with only daf (hand drum), shruti box, and an array of acapella songs, Billotte is a true modern trobairitz (fem. troubadour), the sound ranges from loud psychedelia to meditative trance, the voice evokes Nico and Catherine Ribeiro with traces of Grace Slick, drifting from traditional to experimental folk, a soulful, mystic music is at the root.

White Magic released the recordings “Through the Sun Door” ep, “Dat Rosa Mel Apibus” Lp and “Dark Stars” ep with the label Drag City, and has recorded with musicians, Ariel Pink, Jim White (Dirty Three, Cat Power), Tim Koh (Ariel Pink), and Douglas Shaw (HighLife, Gang Gang Dance). White Magic has headlined tours in the US, UK and Europe extensively, and has toured with Animal Collective, Sonic Youth, Joanna Newsom, and Bonnie Prince Billy, also performing at festivals, such as ATP UK, invited by curator artists God Speed You Black Emperor, Sonic Youth, Stephen Malkmus, Slint and Dirty Three, and Distortion festival in Copenhagen, Denmark.


June 28 – July 3

Jeepneys

jeepneys

Jeepneys is an artist working in music, video, dance, and performance. Named after the iconic converted WWII army jeeps of the Philippines, her work investigates the complexities of postcolonial past and future identities.

With experimental operas, multimedia installations, and a fleet of handpainted bodyspacesuits, Jeepneys creates new mythological landscapes with a distinctive visual and sonic language.

She has shown at Pacific Standard Time Presents, REDCAT, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE), ALOUD for the Los Angeles Public Library, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA), the Avant-Garde Festival curated by Faust, and Human Resources Gallery. She is a member of Black Salt Collective, whose members are all Black, brown, and indigenous women, creating work about ancestry and identity in a contemporary context. — Photo: David Park


July 5 – 6

Weyes Blood

node-image_1

Rooted in American and British folk, Weyes Blood pulls and stretches the style at its fringes, like a sweater that’s just begun to unravel. Traditional instruments (guitar, piano, drums) are set against electronics and tape effects, collages and the melodic qualities of delay, that bridge an older world of songcraft into the future, creating a synthesis between all the best of the 20th century and those that came before. A song like the melancholy ballad “Bad Magic” possesses infinite beauty in its sadness and how it releases those sentiments, but it’s even more beautiful in relief to all the other material on The Innocents. Never once does she repeat herself. Each song is a variant on the styles present in the record, and each is unmistakably her own. — Mexican Summer


July 7 – 10
Caught A Ghost

caught_a_ghostThe Los Angeles based project from singer, producer, songwriter and DJ Jesse Nolan takes its name from an old expression that equates music with demonic possession. Nolan’s compositions draw from the classic sounds of American Soul and 90s Rap, but with a contemporary twist. Caught a Ghost released the debut album HUMAN NATURE in 2014. Travelling with a rotating group of talented collaborators, Caught a Ghost puts on an energetic live show, capturing the attention of fans all over the world, and securing placements in dozens of TV shows. Nolan is currently working on the second album, as well as producing tracks for several other artists.


July 12 – 17
Lex Brown

Lex Brown is an artist, vocalist, and author working in music, video, and costume design. In pop and rap soundscapes that are dark and distant, haunting and catchy, her work positions an experience of the present within the context of written history and an imaginative future, treading the territory between subjectivity, politics, education, economy and resistance. Viewers have reported “experiencing feelings they had never been allowed to feel before.” She will debut a new music project: Sylvester Ford, named after her great-grandfather who was born on the ash-covered volcanic island of Monserrat.

Brown graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University in 2012, and attended Skowhegan School for Painting and Sculpture that same year. In 2013, she was the Coordinator and Lead Teacher at Thomas Hirschhorn’s Gramsci Monument, produced by Dia Art Foundation in the Bronx, NY and will work with Hirschhorn again this summer as a fellow at the Paul Klee Center in Bern, Switzerland. She is currently pursuing an MFA at Yale University.

Brown has performed and exhibited work at REDCAT Theater and The Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, the New Museum in New York, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland. This fall, Badlands Unlimited published Brown’s first work in fiction, My Wet Hot Drone Summer, a sci-fi erotic novella that takes on sex, surveillance, and social justice in the age of climate change.


July 19 – 24
Noveller

sarah_novellerNoveller is the solo electric guitar project of Brooklyn-based composer and filmmaker Sarah Lipstate. Handling the guitar as her muse, Lipstate summons a sonic palette so rich as to challenge the listener to conceive of how it’s housed in a single instrument manipulated by a solitary performer.

In 2014, Lipstate announced her signing with Fire Records.  Fire released Noveller’s latest full-length ‘Fantastic Planet’ in January 2015 and also re-issued Noveller’s critically acclaimed albums ‘No Dreams’ and ‘Glacial Glow’ in early 2016.  She’s previously released records on No Fun Productions, Important Records, Weird Forest, Taiga, and her own imprint Saffron Recordings. Noveller has toured with St. Vincent, Radiolab, Xiu Xiu, the Jesus Lizard, U.S. Girls, Aidan Baker, and Emeralds.

Lipstate has collaborated with several renowned musicians, including live improvised duo performances with Carla Bozulich (Evangelista, The Geraldine Fibbers), David Wm. Sims (the Jesus Lizard, Scratch Acid), Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth), and JG Thirlwell (Foetus, Manorexia). She has previously performed as a member of Cold Cave, Parts & Labor, and One Umbrella. Lipstate has also participated in Rhys Chatham’s Guitar Army, Ben Frost’s “Music for 6 Guitars” Ensemble, and Glenn Branca’s 100 guitar ensemble.

And, umm, Sarah just recently completed a tour opening for Iggy Pop. Goddam badass, just saying. — Photo: Brent Angelo Photography


July 26 – 31
Mecca Vazie Andrews

unnamedEstablished in 2007 by Mecca Vazie Andrews, The MOVEMENT movement’s mission is to preserve and present historical, cultural and sub cultural traditions through alternative performance experiences by partnering theater, performance art, dance, and text. As Artistic Director of The MOVEMENT movement, Mecca Vazie Andrews develops poignant content through thoughtful consideration of the site in relation to the choreographic and creative direction of the piece. The MOVEMENT movement maintains a commitment to sustaining a unique voice while at the same time considering the community that is viewing the work, therefore not only being site responsive but community responsive as well.

The MOVEMENT movement has performed at various artful happenings, museums and galleries including Pacific Standard Time, REDCAT Now Fest 2013: Molly Maps Erratic written, choreographed, and directed by Mecca V.A. Recent Commission by Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Department to develop site-inspired work for The Wonder Room at Tongva Park. Mecca was also commissioned to develop new work in response to Joseph Horowitz’ 365 Dots installation at 356 Mission Rd. In October of 2014 where she developed the third installment of The MOVEMENT movement’ Of Light and Dark Series this work entitled A Matter of Compass. Art of Elysium’ GENESIS Benefit choreographer 2014, LAX Greystone Mansion Event Collaborator to Creative Director/Artist Liz Glynn 2014, Art of Elysium Heaven Gala site specific soloist 2015, as manifesto speaker for Marina Abramovic’s opening Gala for MOCA LA, LA Art Show choreographer for Suzanne Lacy’s Myths of Rape, Los Angeles Museum of Art as Choreographer for Liz Glynn’s Hello Girls , Dilletante Gallery Papercranes RESIDENCY, Santa Museum of Art Choreographer for Barkley Hendricks Opening, Center Theater Group as dance captainn for Phil Soltanoff workshop, LAX Arts 2012 Blackbox presenter, Hammer Museum, Show Box LA residency recipient and Director and curator for site specific event The Series at the Standard DTLA, and LACE.

Commercially Mecca has choreographed for Daft Punk, Papercranes, MEN, Toro y Moi, Silk Documentary, Nostalghia’s “You and I”, short film “Bhatki” for Margo Victor and Free City clothing company, Bess Clothing Company, Wild Belle’s ‘Its Too Late”, Ali Helnwein, Ariana Delawari’s ‘Be Gone Taliban’, Scarlet Rabe, Ricki Lake, Basement Jaxx “Raindrops” Music Video, Submarines, Prince Poppycock, Avante African Dance Band The Very Best, Conway, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. to name a few.

Instructional and Choreographic Credits include LA Contemporary Dance Company, Hysterica Dance Company, Joffrey Ballet School, Edge Performing Arts Center, Loyola Marymount University, Los Feliz Charter School for the Arts, LA Ballet Academy, Millennium Dance Complex, Valley Beth Shalom, The Sweat Spot, Nashville School for the Arts, New York City Dance School Stuttgart, Germany and Broadway Dance Center.

Meccas is co-voice and lyricist in post punk band Sex Stains.

Mecca Vazie Andrews is represented for commercial dance, instruction and choreography by Go To Talent Agency


August 2 – 4
Baby Aspirin DVD

babyaspirinCordey Lopez is a transmedia artist currently completing an Music Technology MFA at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). His current work is focused on the realizations of both sound as abstract, physical form and as an artifice of synthesis, thematically, in relation to contemporary dialogues and notions of the “authenticity of reality.” He performs live electronic music under the moniker BABY ASPIRIN DVD.

Cordey currently resides in rustic Val Verde, California.

August 5 – 7
Opera on Tap

OperaOnTapLAFounded in Brooklyn in 2005, Opera on Tap is a national nonprofit with 16 chapters across the country with a mission to break down the stereotype that opera is a stuffy or elitist art form by bringing it to bars and other non-traditional venues — like Monkey Town. Local professional opera singers let their hair down and bring you into what feels like an after hours backstage party, singing opera’s best known pieces, as well as deeper cuts, in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere – often with a drink in hand!

Monkey Town has hosted opera performances in Denver (Opera on Tap), Barcelona (a Ukrainian soprano discovered singing at the Barcelona Cathedral), and Austin (Local Opera Local Artists — LOLA). The experience of professional opera singers performing arias 5 or 10 feet away from you is a rare and superhuman offering. Conversions and tears are not uncommon.


August 9 – 14
Paz Lenchantin

pazShe is the bassist of the Pixies and The Entrance Band. She’s played and arranged strings for Silver Jews, Jenny Lewis, Queens of the Stone Age, Josephine Foster, to name a few. Her previous bands were A Perfect Circle and Zwan.

Her solo performances magnify her multiple talents. Switching between violin and bass, while manipulating an array of pedals, Lenchantin creates walls of sound and melody that escalate, layer and land softly between her haunted vocals. The effect is primal, mesmerizing, and masterful. We are super pleased to have her big sound in our big cube.

August 16 – 21
Robert Crouch + Yann Novak

robertandyannRobert Crouch and Yann Novak are sound and visual artists living and working in Los Angeles. Their practice incorporates field recordings, photography, and video as tools to investigate the relationship between site and subject. Through the digital manipulation of these sound and image files, Novak transforms these documents of personal experiences into abstracted impressions of the original subject. Crouch uses a combination of digital processing and modular synthesis to further abstract their subject matter.

Their current work explores the relationship between contemporary art making practices and the historical tradition of romantic landscape painting. Their installations and performances have been presented at the AxS Festival, Pasadena; California Museum of Photography, Riverside; Garboushian Gallery, Beverly Hills; Highways Performance Space, Santa Monica; LACMA, Los Angeles; Pøst, Los Angeles, Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York and others.

August 23 – 28
SORNE

sorne Morgan Sorne is a multi-dimensional enigma. A prolific visual artist, musician, actor and filmmaker, boasting a four octave vocal range with perfect pitch. He brings listeners to tears with his unparalleled hypnotic angelic falsetto, and has churned crowds into a rocking frenzy with his bone-rattling dynamicism and range.

He has performed and played at some of the most prestigious venues in America, winning over the hearts and minds of audiences at Irving Plaza in New York, the legendary Fillmore Theatre in San Francisco and the Fonda Theater in Los Angeles.

“It’s as if Freddie Mercury, David Byrne, an early David Bowie, Afrika Bambaataa, and the Cure’s Robert Smith had gotten together and had a baby. He (Morgan Sorne) is an enigma, chanting like an ancient tribesman, stomping like he’s dancing for rain, and whirling like a helicopter, while his voice scales the ranges of the mesmerizing and hypnotic, to almost unnaturally Edith Piaf high notes.” — Stephen Macmillan Moser, Austin Chronicle

September 6 – 11
Weyes Blood

weyesActive in underground music since 2006, Natalie Mering has collaborated with Jackie-O Motherfucker and Ariel Pink, and released four records as Weyes Blood. Front Row Seat to Earth is her third record for Mexican Summer.

The first thing you notice about Weyes Blood’s new album, is its closeness. The music is immediate and warm with intimate feeling. This disarming nearness draws out emotion from the album’s sound in evocative, bold color. The lyrics serve not to obscure and mystify, but to perform, reveal, and take the listener inside. This is the folk music of the near future.

Natalie Mering, the being behind Weyes Blood, sings sublimely on Front Row. These are her words and she means them. Between the subtle pulses of her breath, we feel the textures of her voice. Her delivery is a trained low gloss, polished with the charm of speech. Mering embeds her song in a harmonic gauze of arpeggiated piano, acoustic guitar, druggy horns, and outer space electronics. Propulsive, spare drums carry us across the album’s course.

September 13 – 18
Rachel Mason

Matthew SpiegelmanRachel Mason will be performing songs from her forthcoming album, Das Ram, with a new video song cycle inspired by the stars Rigel and Sirius (aka Dogstar). The video is a new collaboration between choreographer and dancers Haylee Nichele and Chelsea Zeffiro,  fashion designer and musician Linda Kiss, artist and drummer Sophia Cleary and artist Jeff Hassay and cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

In scripts, sculpture, rock operas, performances and songs spanning over a decade, Mason has created imagined worlds where animals, objects, mythological creatures and all forms of non-human entities have taken shape through her body and voice. Her shows wrap the audience in fantastical narratives which interweave musical, theatrical and narrative elements into unexpected operatic journeys. She has recorded 13 full-length albums and three operas, including her most recent unique rock opera feature film The Lives of Hamilton Fish, which toured the world in 2015 and was released in 2016. Mason has exhibited her visual art and performance work at museums, film and performance festivals internationally. Her work has garnered press attention from the likes of Vice, Interview Magazine, The New York Times, Artforum, LA Weekly, The New Yorker, The Los Angeles Times, Art in America, and Flash Art.

September 20 – 25
Flora Wiegmann

halo-consciousness-art-fair-7aug16-108Flora Wiegmann is a Los Angeles-based dancer and choreographer.  She works in both live performance and film, often making research-based work that is specific to its particular site. She has had the opportunity to collaborate with artists such as Fritz Haeg, Silke Otto-Knapp, Alix Lambert, Amy Granat, Miljohn Ruperto, Nina Waisman and Tom Lawson. Her projects have been presented at the ICA, Philadelphia; The Kitchen, New York; the California Biennial and LA><ART in California, The David Roberts Foundation and The Camden Arts Centre, London; The Banff Center for Creativity in Canada, and Université Rennes in France. She performed at Monkey Town in New York in 2006 and is excited to be back.

Wiegmann’s latest project originated out of a dance residency in a former temple of Culte Antoiniste in Brussels. The piece was recently performed in Union Station as part of the Seattle Art Fair. During this week at Monkey Town, Wiegmann will be joined by dancer Rebecca Bruno to re-edit and reassemble portions of L’Aureole de la Conscience. Here, they will investigate imagined actions that could be unique to Antoinism, the history of movement and ailments that reside in the two dancers’ bodies, and the possibility to activate consciousness through meditative events.

September 27 – October 6
Chris Catalena

CatalenaHere Comes the Time, the proper debut from Austin’s Chris Catalena is a sunlit, psych-pop album that provides a crowning introduction to a veteran songwriter. Clocking in at just over a half-hour, the songs weave in and out of reality, chronicling a relationship gone awry prior to the making of the record. Recorded during his time spent in Laurel Canyon and Hollywood in an attempt to turn over a new leaf sonically, we find the Native Americans victorious.

Eclecticism can often feel artificial, yet somehow here we find it thwarting Catalena forward into territory previously untouched by past projects. Produced by Rob Campanella of the Brian Jonestown Massacre, Here Comes the Time is rooted in traditional folk and country sounds, yet when met with oftentimes surreal lyrics on tracks like ‘Yesterday’s Today’ and ‘Golden Strings,’ we find Catalena reaching more towards the likes of Pet Sounds and Sgt. Peppers. Even on ‘Doctor Napalm,’ a fairly straight ahead country-blues anthem, there is an LA-via-Austin psychedelia present that perhaps other roots musicians would shy away from. Maybe it was the assist from fellow Austin native Alex Maas from psych-rock titans The Black Angels. Regardless, it is refreshing to see an artist take risks, all the while remembering what it is they do so well.” — Jeffery Silverstein, The 405

Sign up for our email list to get updates on Special Screenings, discounts, and future Monkey Town cities: