2019 Artist Lineup

Arooj Aftab, Anjna Swaminathan & Rafiq Bhatia Trio
Arooj Aftab is a neo-sufi and minimalist composer/singer who gracefully experiments and bends the lines between ancient mysic poetry, south asian classical, jazz, soul and electronic dreamscape musics. In 2018, Aftab was named among NPR’s 200 Greatest Songs by 21st Century Women, and The New York Time’s 25 Best Classical Songs of 2018. Aftab has collaborated with artists such as Meshell Ndegeocello, Vijay Iyer and more. She has performed at MoMa’s Summer Series, and will be performing at the Brooklyn Museum’s First Saturday this May 2019. Her latest album ‘Siren Islands’ was dubbed ‘easily one of our favorite music of 2018’ by The New York Times.
Anjna Swaminathan is a versatile violinist, composer, and multidisciplinary artist. A disciple of the late violin maestro M.S. Gopalakrishnan and H.K. Narasimhamurthy, she performs regularly in Carnatic, Hindustani and creative music settings. Anjna often engages in artistic work that ties together multiple aesthetic forms towards a critical consciousness. During the past few years, Anjna has delved into the realm of composition and is currently a fellow at the Gabriela Lena Frank Creative Academy of Music.
Heralded as “one of the most intriguing figures in music today” by the New York Times, composer, producer, and guitarist Rafiq Bhatia’s music reconciles meticulous sound art with mercurial improvisation to deliver searing emotional intensity. His second album, Breaking English (2018, ANTI-) reveals “a stunningly focused new sound” (Chicago Reader) that is “mesmerizing” (XLR8R), “dark, powerful, inventive” (Stereogum), and “a thoroughly engaging experimental enterprise” (Wall Street Journal). “A guitarist who refuses to be pinned down to one genre, culture, or instrument” (New York Times), Bhatia is a member of the band Son Lux, and has appeared on recordings or in performance with artists across disciplines including Olga Bell, Sam Dew, Marcus Gilmore, Billy Hart, Heems, Helado Negro, Vijay Iyer, Lorde, Valgeir Sigurðsson, Sufjan Stevens, Moses Sumney, David Virelles, and numerous others.
BMCM+AC – Merce Cunningham Centennial Celebration with Historic Dance Films
As a part of the Merce Cunningham Centennial Celebration, a global series of performances and installations that honor the legacy of the legendary choreographer, dancer and BMC Faculty member, BMCM+AC will project historic dance films of the Cunningham Dance Company. These ongoing installations will occur alongside contemporary work by {Re}HAPPENING artists. Films will include Variations V (1966,) Septet (1953 / 1964 performance), How to Pass, Kick, Fall and Run (1965) as well as later performances from the 1970s and 1990s. 
The Merce Cunningham Centennial unites artists, companies, and cultural and educational institutions in a multifaceted display and celebration of Cunningham’s vital impact. The Merce Cunningham Centennial, launched this past fall and continuing throughout all of 2019, celebrates the legacy of one of the most influential choreographers of our time with events reaching from Los Angeles to Havana to New Plymouth, New Zealand. The Centennial’s breadth of activities and diversity of participating partners demonstrate the profound, enduring resonance of the choreographer’s work and his approach to how the body moves in time and space.
South Indian Classical Music – Kiranavali Vidyasankar (Vocals), Sandhya Anand (Violin), Vinod Seetharaman (Mrdangam)
Award winning Carnatic musician Kiranavali Vidyasankar has charted out a unique identity for herself as a performer, scholar, teacher and writer. Her career as a performer has taken her to many renowned centers across India, USA, Canada and Europe such as the National Center for Performing Arts (Mumbai), India International Center (New Delhi), India Habitat Center (New Delhi), The Music Academy (Chennai), Cleveland Tyagaraja Festival (Ohio), Bharati Kala Manram (Toronto), Ethnological Museum (Hamburg) and Reitberg Museum (Zurich). She has also been invited to present talks, lec-dems and workshops on various topics pertaining to Carnatic music.
Sandhya Anand is a trained vocalist and violinist. She is a violin disciple of Sri T.V. Gopalakrishan and R. Swaminathan and has been trained in vocal music by Smt. Suguna Varadachari.  A graded artist of All India Radio, she has performed extensively in India and abroad. She has won various awards and scholarships as a student of music.
Vinod Seetharaman started learning mridangam at the age of seven from Shri. Ardhanareeswaran. He had his advanced training under Bangalore Shri. Arjun Kumar and Sangeetha Kalanidhi Shri. Umayalpuram Sivaraman. Schooled in the pure classical music tradition under his Guru’s guidance and tutelage, Vinod has developed into an accomplished artist. His performances has been widely acclaimed and appreciated by audiences at various musical events in India, United States of America, and Canada. He is one of the most sought after accompanist for artists on their concert tours. Some of the prominent artists he has accompanied include TN Seshagopalan, N.Ramani, TM Krishna, Sudha Raghunathan, etc. He is a Graded All India Radio artiste with many radio concerts to his credit and national television in India.
The “John Cage” Gymnasium – Eric “Rodent” Cheslak and Michael Johnson
Eric “Rodent” Cheslak and Michael Johnson will take over the Camp Rockmont Gymnasium, built on the original campus as part of its new life as a summer camp for boys. Through experimental sound and synth performances, they will imbue this space with the spirit of John Cage, marking his legacy on the grounds.
Quiet House – Adam Larsen
Adam Larsen will recreate Hazel Larsen Archer’s iconic photograph, Quiet House Doors (1948) as a physical installation. The Quiet House was built in 1942 as a memorial to Mark Dreier, the son of Ted and Bobbie Dreier, who died in an accident in 1941. This building was created as a secular space of gathering, meditation and mindfulness. Hazel Larsen Archer, faculty of photography, captured the beauty of its design and intention in her photographs, following the light cast through the trees surrounding the structure. In Adam Larsen’s installation, a projector will cast moving, dappled sunlight onto a recreation of the original Quiet House door which will be held within the renovated building as it stands today. The piece asks the question of whether or not a fabrication can elicit an emotional response – akin to the original Quiet House’s intent. 
Free Planet Radio
Free Planet Radio will highlight {Re}HAPPENING 9’s global context by bringing its world-jazz-classical music blend to the stage. Based in Asheville, Free Planet Radio consists of two-time Grammy winner Eliot Wadopian on bass; River Guerguerian on an extensive array of global percussion instruments including Middle Eastern frame drums and doumbek, the Indian kanjira, African djembe, and Western drum set; and Chris Rosser exploring melody on the 17-stringed Indian dotar, Turkish cumbus oud, guitar, piano and melodica. Together they make music that weaves the improvisatory element of jazz, and the subtleties and harmonic vocabulary of Western classical music, with Middle Eastern, Indian and North African melodic and rhythmic structures. They have performed with jazz singer Lizz Wright, poet Robert Bly, Turkish instrumentalist Omar Faruk Tekbilek, bluegrass violinist Casey Driessen, flute virtuoso Rhonda Larson, Armenian singer Mariam Matossian, and Persian violinist Farzad Farhangi.
Interpretations of Absurdity – Okapi and Edwin Salas
“Interpretations of Absurdity” is a collaborative performance between the musical duo, Okapi, and movement artist, Edwin Salas. Okapi presents anecdotes reflecting pieces of life’s mosaic, which involve complex confrontations with cryptic emotions and circumstances. Edwin Salas interprets these confrontations in visual form, embodying all the compromises and sacrifices woven into one’s decisions after facing life’s harsh ultimatums.
Nothing’s Happening: A Black Mountain College Project – UNC Asheville / SITI
John Cage’s Lecture On Nothing (1959) is a “composed talk” in which the form, composed using techniques that would later lead to Cage’s seminal 4’33”, is as significant as the meanings of the words in it. Lecture On Nothing transcends both writing and speaking to delicately dance with the changing nature of music and weave a meditation on semantic emptiness that is still ahead of its time.
This is a work in progress presentation of a larger work, centered on Lecture On Nothing, being developed at the University Of North Carolina Asheville in collaboration with New York City based SITI Company as part of the Black Mountain College Legacy Fellowship.
Gombroon – A. Eithne Hamilton, Sharon Cooper and Liz Lang
Gombroon is a multimedia exploration of the sumptuous and ill-fated home of the same name built for Zebulon Vance in the Black Mountains in 1890. Conceived by A. Eithne Hamilton, founder of the Pipsissewa Movement Project, and performed with Sharon Cooper and Liz Lang, this work imagines the hidden histories of Gombroon, which burned down in the 1930s. Using movement, sound, film and sculptural elements, we investigate the psychogeography of the house, it’s builders and it’s inhabitants.
Customer Service – Madalyn Wofford, Kaylee Dunn, Ethan Gibbs, Byron Browne, Christopher O’Leary, Adam McDaniels, Sather Robinson-Waters, Honey
“Customer Service” is an interactive experiment that explores the ways we claim identity through assembly line products. Stand in line while you question the nature of autonomy and consumer identity.
Things I Said I’d Never Be – Aaron Butler
A solo performer assembles materials to collage: continuous and detailed sounds pulled from an acoustic sound source; these same sounds recorded and played back through two or more resonant objects prepared with transducers; and environmental recordings made in two locations that carry strong positive or negative charge. These sounds intertwine and react with one another, the ambient sound and energy of their recorded and metaphoric locations, and bloom into the ensuing space inhabited by the listener, slowly and surely if tuned so that the initial noise from the past is just audible in the present.
Christina Gesualdi and Jesse Kudler
The movement and sound duo of Christina Gesualdi and Jesse Kudler present a new work, developed together in rehearsal. The veteran Philadelphia performers explore the inter-dependence and inter-relations of sound and movement, with the boundaries between dancer and accompanist deliberately troubled. Tools and approaches vary with process, incorporating voice, electronics, recordings, microphones, percussion, acoustic guitar, computer, stillness, durational modes of moving, falling off center, yielding to gravity, and moving with a plural sense of front.
The Reinvention of Romance by Sarah Hennies performed by Two Way Street
“The Reinvention of Romance” is written by Sarah Hennies and commissioned by Two-Way Street, the Knoxville, TN-based duo of Ashlee Booth (cello) and Adam Lion (percussion) who requested that Sarah compose, “a very long piece.” The work examines the care and empathy that emerges when two lives share space over a long period of time. Over the course of 90 minutes, “The Reinvention of Romance” uses a seemingly endless series of repeating patterns to create a peculiar kind of harmony where the two musicians are rarely “playing together” but are nonetheless intimately bonded together by their circumstances and sensitivity.
Worn Words – Courtney Lockemer
“Worn Words” is a live performance exploring the intersection of fashion, culture, and language. The artist will de- and re-construct clothing with words on it, sewing them together into new garments and new arrangements of language. Visitors are invited to both contribute their own used clothing to the project and take the refashioned garments to wear.
Making Do – Nida Abdullah and Anna Buckner
Making Do is first and foremost situated within and responsive to Black Mountain, North Carolina. Participants will begin the workshop by considering objects that capture the feeling of the place, contributing to both a collaborative, projected Google Sheet and a collaborative physical installation. Making Do celebrates the generous and experimental nature of art-making, adopting a model of play through making and embracing a journey rather than an arrival.
Draw-a-thon with Circles and Wigs
The “Draw-a-thon” is an ongoing performative project where drawings are rapidly passed back and forth between participants using a variety of media and strategies. A marathon of drawing, the “Draw-a-thon” will maintain its duration for seven hours hosted by CIRCLES & WIGS. Visitors will be encouraged to join in throughout the performance.
The plants are going to win: A look at nature, climate change, and how we are inevitably all in this together – Daniel Homero, Alexis Miller, Karen George, Marc Hennessey
This piece explores the power of nature, our blindness to it, and ultimately, our oneness with it. Four unique artists, blending dance, sculpture, live electric violin, and natural building, come together to create a piece that will make you wonder why we’re all still here.
Twice Told Tales: A place to call home (we are all refugees) | The Transfluent Orchestra / Mobile Coaction Lab –  Gene Felice, Nathanial Ober, The Coaction Lab (UNC Wilmington), Intermedia MFA & PHD Graduate program at the University of Maine 
The Coaction Lab at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and the Intermedia MFA & PHD Graduate program at the University of Maine will bring a fresh collaboration to the {Re}HAPPENING 2019. This will take the form of two collaborative group projects bridging the IMFA program and a small group of Intermedia MFA graduate students with the Coaction Lab and the newly developed Mobile Coaction Lab. The MCL will create a site-specific blend of art, technology and multimedia performance / installation titled “The Transfluent Orchestra” an ongoing collaboration between Gene A. Felice II and Nathan Ober. The IMFA program project is titled “Twice Told Tales,” a community-engaged project that explores, family history, ancestry, our connection to place and our shared human experience.
Mechthild of Magdeburg, M.C. Richards and the Mystical Meristem – Joan Heller, Samuel Humphreys, Clara Zander, and Nathaniel Humphreys
Poems of Mechthild the Beguine, her story and the words of potter-poet M.C. Richards inform movement to the pulse of the potter’s kick wheel. Spiraling out from the center, dancers lead passers-by into the gestural shape as it grows upward.
Obscura Dome(s) 1 & 2 – Kaleb Lyda
Obscura Dome(s) are partial geodesic domes with multiple triangular camera obscuras protruding from each panel. Viewers can stand underneath the domes and view the world around them inverted and projected on screens by pinholes.
Untitled Toilet Piece – DJ Kutzu
A lighthearted homage to the use of toilets as art objects (or anit-art) in modern art. A white porcelain toilet will be placed in an open outdoor space, inviting you to sit and experience hidden components.
Cartomancy – Matt Cosper, performer; Renee Cloud, director; Amy Bagwell, writer
“Cartomancy” is a work of projected autobiography. It’s a first-person dramatic monologue with improvisation outward from and back into the poem’s text prompted by the chance operations of the Tarot. Created with support from Goodyear Arts.
MindMoog: Group Mind – Taylor Raboin
Using a brain sensing headband, participants are invited to briefly meditate while their minds modulate a Moog synthesizer. These short sessions will loop together in a growing body of sound, merging individual oscillations into a collective chorus that represents the group mind of the event.
Interactive Cube Projection – Laura Sellers and Eric Harrison
The work of Laura Sellers and Eric Harrison consists of light painting onto sculptural forms using video projection. Sellers created fifty wooden cubes, painted them white, and then the duo project various videos onto the cube structure. The subject matter of this piece revolves around how geometric modern structures have affected the organic environment.
The Ruse of Medusa: Intersections of Ethnography and a Surrealist Play – Christina Sornito and Appalachian State University Students
The story of Erik Satie in America most notably begins with M.C. Richards’ translation of “The Ruse of Medusa,” and its historic performance at Black Mountain College during the summer of 1947. Since then the play has rarely been performed, however it is a significant cultural artifact of European and later American (specifically southern) avant-gardes.
“The Ruse of Medusa: Intersections of Ethnography and a Surrealist Play” is a forthcoming book on the little-known life of this play. The project emerged from a performance at Appalachian State University in April of 2018 directed by an anthropologist, Dr. Christina Verano Sornito. For {Re}Happening 2019, Dr. Sornito will give a short reading from the forthcoming book and a performance of scenes from the play will be presented.
the bio:graph – The Uprooted Collective
The Uprooted Collective, traveling from the north woods of central Maine is focusing on the “living mark” created by locally sourced found materials. Brooms and branches, barks and nuts, on repurposed textiles; participants will create their instruments and leave their marks.
Gray to Move – Avey Menard and Coco Villa
Gray to Move combines elements of traditional theatre, experimental movement, and instructional based prompts for an interactive playful experience. We invite the audience to move and make sound alongside dancers and instrumentalists on stage, a lifesize three player chess board.