Vital Vox Fest 2012 ~ A Preview

The 4th annual VITAL VOX: A VOCAL FESTIVAL–an event that explores the myriad power of the human voice in its solo and ensemble forms across a multitude of genres–will take place at 8pm on October 29 and 30 at Roulette, located at 509 Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, NY. Tickets are $15 ($10 Students/Seniors/Members) and can be purchased at More information on the festival and the performers can be found at

Over the course of two diverse evenings, VITAL VOX will explore the theme of ‘vox electronics,’ featuring artists who expand their sonic vocabulary with electronics of all kinds. Performances will draw from wide-ranging international influences and genres including jazz, experimental, contemporary, free improvisation, world music, interactive electro-acoustic and audio sampling.

Having seen this festival last year with the likes of Iva Bittova, Gelsey Bell and Judith Berkson, I can say it was a really fascinating couple of nights, and it looks to be just as exciting this year!

Festival founders and curators Sabrina Lastman and Sasha Bogdanowitsch had just a little time to stop and discuss this year’s show.

CM: Can you talk about the festival this year and how it is different this time?

S&S: The festival is in its 4th year and this year it focuses on a new selection of artists to us who are composer performers, just like in years past. The main different aspect in this year’s festival is the two day theme of new vocal music with electronics of any kind, shape and size. For some artists this means processing & live looping, others it means interactive video and computer programs. The world of electronic music is an ever growing field and has brought a huge new palette to vocal music.

CM: Are there any specific people we should look out for at these shows?

S&S: As curators of the festival we are happy to bring artists that come from different musical backgrounds and vocal approaches. In the festival, we are interested in intermingling different generations of artists. For instance, those that have had long careers in the field mixed with younger musicians who are still developing their careers. We would like people to experience the festival in its entirety:

The October 29 program includes vocalist Philip Hamilton performing “Vocalscapes: Solitude”, vocalist/composer Sabrina Lastman performing her original piece “An Encounter with ‘El Duende’”, and Unearthish—a duo comprised of violinist/composer/vocalist Sarah Bernstein and percussionist/electronic musician Satoshi Takeishi—performing Bernstein’s compositions.

[Pictured right Pamela Z courtesy of Ars Electronica]
The October 30 program includes composer/vocalist/video and performance artist Lisa Karrer in collaboration with composer/multi-instrumentalist David Simons performing “Collision Theory: Works & Premieres for Voice & Multi-Media”, composer/vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Sasha Bogdanowitsch performing his new song cycle “Mirror Upon Mirror”, and composer/performer Pamela Z performing works for voice, live processing and video.

CM: Will there still be a Q&A segment at the end of the concerts? Those are always wonderful and informative.

S&S: We will have a talk back with artists and audience each night, so people will have the opportunity to interact with artists to get to know a little bit more about their work and creation process, etc.

UPDATE: The 2012 Vital Vox Vocal Festival, which was scheduled to take place October 29 and 30 at Brooklyn’s Roulette, has been postponed due to Hurricane Sandy.

New dates will be announced soon. Apologies for the inconvenience.

For more information, contact Jill Strominger: (617) 270-8853

Learn more about the Vital Vox festival at


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