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Epsilon Spires

A Place to Begin: Clarice Jensen and Peter Coccoma

Performances by Clarice Jensen and Peter Coccoma that explore active listening and meditation. *EVENT POSTPONED

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A Place to Begin: Clarice Jensen and Peter Coccoma
A Place to Begin: Clarice Jensen and Peter Coccoma

Time & Location

Time is TBD

Epsilon Spires, 190 Main St, Brattleboro, VT 05301, USA

About the Event

Brooklyn-based composer and filmmaker,  Peter Coccoma will perform a blend of processed samples, synths, and strings from his new album: A Place to Begin. Featured as one of  NPR’s Best Albums of 2022, he wrote the record while living in isolation on Madeline island in Lake Superior following the misdiagnosis of a loved one with a terminal illness.  In the wake of this experience, Coccoma became fascinated with maranasati—the practice of bringing an awareness of death into one’s daily life. According to this teaching, one of the effects of becoming familiar with death is that it can shine a light back on life and the beauty of the temporal nature of all things. Coccoma explains, on the island, maranasati became “a tool to remind me to be present and, through that, to turn outwardly to all these things around me in the natural world.” As both a "sonic geography of a frozen island," and an exploration of what "an awareness of death can teach us about living," A Place to Begin provides a decidedly active listening experience. Coccoma’s unclassifiable electroacoustic textures play the role of tour guide, leading us through his imagined landscape and gently guiding us towards its visceral extremes. Listen to "Opening" from A Place To Begin

Peter has also composed music for independent films and radio shows, and has directed documentary, experimental, and music videos that have been shown at film festivals around the world. His 2020 experimental short film, Jeano, was made with support from Smithsonian Folkways and premiered at the Chicago Underground Film Festival. His newest narrative short film, Giro Prepares for Death, is in post-production.

Clarice Jensen is a composer and cellist based in New York who is a graduate of the Juilliard School. A versatile collaborator, Jensen has recorded and performed with a host of stellar artists including Jóhann Jóhannsson, Max Richter, Björk, Taylor Swift, Michael Stipe, the National and many others. In her role as the artistic director of ACME (the American Contemporary Music Ensemble), she has helped bring to life some of the most revered works of modern classical music, including pieces by Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Terry Riley, and more.

As a solo artist, Clarice has developed a distinctive compositional approach, improvising and layering her cello through shifting loops and a chain of electronic effects to open out and explore a series of rich, drone-based sound fields. Pulsing, visceral and full of color, her work is deeply immersive, marked by a wonderful sense of restraint and an almost hallucinatory clarity. Meditative yet with a sculptural sharpness and rigor that sets it apart from the swathe of contemporary New Age / DIY drone music, she has forged a very elegant and precise vision. Jensen's music has been described by Self-Titled as “Incredibly powerful neo-classical pieces that seem to come straight from another astral plane”; and by Boomkat as “languorously void-touching ideas, scaling and sustaining a sublime tension”

Jensen’s striking debut album For This From That Will Be Filled was released in April 2018 on the Berlin-based label Miasmah and followed in September 2019 with the "Drone Studies" EP, a cassette release via Geographic North. Signing to FatCat’s 130701 imprint in 2019, her sophomore album The experience of repetition as death was released April 2020. Naming it among the top 50 albums of 2020, NPR remarked "This collection of requiems for a dying mother ranks among the great ambient albums of the 21st century." Her new album Esthesis will be released on October 21, 2022.

Listen to "Joy" from Esthesis

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  • Clarice Jensen & Peter Coccoma

    $20.00

    Admission for one to: A Place To Begin: Clarice Jensen & Peter Coccoma. Please choose your seating with respect for others and let us know if you require special arrangements. $2 from every ticket goes directly towards the historic preservation of the venue. Thank you for your support! Enjoy the program!

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  • Sliding-scale ticket

    Pay what you want

    Tickets for this event are $20. Thanks to a generous grant from the Ben and Jerry’s Foundation, subsidized sliding-scale tickets are available for those who self-identify as experiencing financial hardship. In order to make this program accessible for all, we are offering tickets by sliding scale. Taking equity and inclusion into account, please pay what you can to help support the artists and venue.

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    I would like to add a donation to my ticket to express my support and appreciation of the adventurous and intellectually-engaging programs at Epsilon Spires. Thank you & keep up the good work!

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