Curious Ear

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Thursday 18th April

Alex Ward’s Item 4

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The Alex Ward Item Series was launched in September 2017 at Cafe Oto with the debut performance by ITEM 10, Ward’s first foray into the world of composition for large ensemble. Now follows the second group in the series – ITEM 4, a quartet consisting of Alex on clarinet and guitar, Charlotte Keeffe on trumpet and flugelhorn, Otto Willberg on double bass and Andrew Lisle on drums. All the members were also participants in the Item 10 performance (the Item Series being conceived as a pool of musicians from which various sizes of ensemble can be drawn for different musical ends), and are amongst the most idiosyncratic and distinctive improvisers on the current UK scene. In writing for the group, Alex’s aim was to exert as minimal limitation on the players’ interaction and invention as possible, while still giving rise to a music distinct from that which would come about through pure improvisation – in this case, the means to achieving this was a conception of compositional materials as akin to emotional landmarks in an otherwise wide-open terrain… concentrates of melodic/harmonic information whose structural and affective characteristics resonate through the musical whole without controlling or defining it. This is the first perfromance of the group outside London.

David Birchall/Dr Syed Kamran Ali

Debut performance from this new modular/homemade sampler duo unit. Expect erratic lighting, almost the chance to dance and large cloaks.

Andrew Cheetham

Solo percussion performance

@ The Peer Hat, 14-16 Faraday St, Manchester

8pm doors £6



December 11th

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Alex Ward & Andrew Cheetham

+ one more

@ The Peerhat, 14-16th Faraday Street, M1 1BE

£6 on door from 8pm



Tuesday 13th November


Colours & Shapes Film

Colours & Shapes: Portraits of Free Improvisers (Trailer) from John Macedo on Vimeo.

Shelley Owen + Arvind Ganga




Benedict Taylor + David Birchall + Andrew Cheetham

@ 3 Minute Theatre (Just inside bottom of Afflecks) Oldham Street, Manchester



Tuesday 9th October

Chris Corsano



Julie Kjaer Hannah Marshall

David Birchall Andrew Cheetham


@ The Peerhat, Faraday Street, Manchester, 8pm doors, £6