Bastard Assignments

Lockdown Jams

Bastard Assignments . Photo by Matt Jolly
Bastard Assignments . Photo by Max Colson


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  • event type:C:N Encore II Showcase
  • date:26 May 2021 - 28 May 2021
  • time: -
  • venue:Online
  • style(s):20th Century
  • event posted by:Piranha Arts


Meet the showcase artists and get first hand insight information on their musical online project presented during Encore. Showcase pitch takes place subsequent to the Conference "Not Just Returning: Adapting" at 14:00 GMT.
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In March 2020 the UK based experimental music and performance group Bastard Assignments had to abandon 18 months of touring plans and started to meet remotely on video conferencing software in order to continue to produce work.

The result of this activity are the Lockdown Jams, short encounters where ideas were tried quickly in the spirit of experimentation. The unpredictable results were of the crisis rather than about it as they tried to find new ways of working together and making contact. Bastard Assignments received some support from the Arts Council England Covid-19 Emergency Response Fund to continue this work as a group as well as ask other artists to make work with and for them.

The first Lockdown Jams commission was Browsing, Idling, Investigating, Dreaming by Alexander Schubert. The four members of Bastard Assignments each operate a different browser window presented together on one screen. Google Maps, Spotify, a text to speech application and a sound effects library combine to create a hypnotic, improvised narrative building an ersatz digital image of West Wales.

Browsing, Idling, Investigating, Dreaming
by Alexander Schubert
performed by Bastard Assignments
Timothy Cape – text to speech
Edward Henderson – Google maps
Caitlin Rowley – Field recordings archive
Josh Spear - Spotify
commissioned by Bastard Assignments using funds from Arts Council England Covid-19 Emergency Fund

Bastard Assignments Biography

"One of the most exciting forces in contemporary music" Financial Times

"Bizarre, compelling and truly unexpected" Frieze

"Some of London’s strangest and most absorbing nights out" The Quietus

Bastard Assignments are Timothy Cape, Edward Henderson, Caitlin Rowley and Josh Spear, four composer-performers who met at London’s Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in 2012. The group have been regularly producing their own events of experimental music and performance in London since 2013, and have been touring as an ensemble since 2017, with notable performances at hcmf//, Aldeburgh Festival, Spor Festival, LCMF, Konsertserien Periferien in Oslo, Brighton Fringe, as well as at London events for Nonclassical, Topophobia and Colourscape Festival. They were resident artists on Snape Maltings’ Open Space residency programme for 2017-19 and appear regularly on BBC Radio 3.

Alexander Schubert Biography

Alexander Schubert (1979) studied bioinformatics, multimedia composition. He’s a professor at the Musikhochschule Hamburg. Schubert’s interest explores the border between the acoustic and electronic worlds. In the music composition, immersive installation and staged pieces he examines the interplay between the digital and the analogue. He creates pieces that realize test settings or interaction spaces that question modes of perception and representation. Continuing topics in this field are authenticity and virtuality. The influence and framing of digital media on aesthetic views and communication is researched in a post-digital perspective. Recent research topics in his works were virtual reality, artificial intelligence and online-mediated artworks.

Schubert is a founding member of ensembles such as “Decoder“. His works have been performed more than 700 times in the last few years by numerous ensembles in over 30 countries.