Formed in 2013, Southland Ensemble is contemporary chamber ensemble dedicated to the interpretation and performance of experimental music. The ensemble consists of seven core members and often collaborates with guests as the music requires. Each member of the ensemble is proficient on a least one or more traditional Western instruments, as well as spoken word and found objects - stones, radios, sheet metal, and household items to name a few.
It is the mission of Southland Ensemble to present experimental music to a wide variety of audiences through the mediums of interactive concerts, lectures and workshops. The ensemble believes strongly in the power of creative programming to educate and enhance the audience’s understanding of an historical or artistic period. Each concert is carefully programmed to reflect a specific creative period in a location or composer's career. Since its formation, the ensemble has presented works by Christian Wolff, Alvin Lucier, Pauline Oliveros, Robert Ashley, James Tenney, Alison Knowles and Laurence Crane, among others.
"Southland Ensemble continues to add an important dimension to the cultural life of Los Angeles with outstanding performances of the late 20th century masters"
CHRISTINE TAVOLACCI & ERIC KM CLARK, co-directors
JENNIFER BEWERSE | ORIN HILDESTAD | JAMES KLOPFLEISCH JONATHAN STEHNEY | CASSIA STREB
CHRISTINE TAVOLACCI (co-director) is a Los Angeles based flutist, composer, and educator specializing in contemporary music. Christine is active as a soloist, improviser, curator and chamber musician both in California and internationally. She has been involved in the premiere of many new works, notably by Alvin Lucier, James Saunders, Michael Pisaro, Chiyoko Slavnics, Carolyn Chen and Catherine Lamb. She is
co-founder and co-director of Southland Ensemble, as well as a member of the Dog Star Orchestra, and has performed as part of Monday Evening Concerts, The Industry, Ojai Festival, LA Phil Noon to Midnight, the Vinny Golia Large Ensemble, Microfest, and the Gurrisonic Orchestra. Her playing has been
released on Orenda Records, Slub Music(Japan) and Tzadik. She has been a guest lecturer at UCLA, University of Redlands and CalArts, an associate instructor at UC San Diego, and has taught several workshops on contemporary music to middle and high school students. She received her Doctorate in Contemporary Performance from University of California, San Diego in 2017.
Los Angeles-based violinist, composer and artist ERIC KENNETH MALCOLM CLARK (Eric KM Clark, co-director) is a specialist in new and experimental music. Eric is a member of the Kadima String Quartet and the new music ensembles Southland Ensemble (co-founder/co-director), Gurrisonic, neithernor and the Dog Star Orchestra. He also works often with The Collected and The Industry (LA), and is a member of Creative Underground Los Angeles. He was a member of the genre-setting ensemble The California E.A.R. Unit for 6 years; and co-founded the wulf. in 2008, working as co-director for the non-profit from 2008-2013. Eric’s compositions have been performed at venues and festivals such as REDCAT, the Berkshire Fringe Festival, the Bang On A Can Marathon, the Extensible Electric Guitar Festival, and the Ontological-Hysteric Incubator. His playing and compositions have been released on the record labels Tzadik, Innova, Henceforth, CQB and New World. Eric's visual art has been exhibited at the Torrance Art Museum, the wulf. and Animatron as well as on Creative Underground LA's website; while his sound installations have been presented at MOCA (during their Sunday Studio) in Los Angeles and the Inglewood Library. As a performer, he enjoys doing a wide variety of projects around the world in various styles.
JENNIFER BEWERSE is an award-winning cellist and specialist in contemporary music. As a result, she has premiered over 100 works and has had the privilege to work with composers including Laurence Crane, Chaya Czernowin, Jonathan Harvey, Gunther Schuller, Augusta Read Thomas, and Christian Wolff. Jennifer has performed as a guest soloist for the wasteLAnd Concert Series, Robert Helps Festival and International Composition Competition, and Without Walls Festival; in concerts at the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum, REDCAT, the Center for New Music, Monday Evening Concerts, Equilibrium Concert Series, Tuesdays at Monk Space, and People Inside Electronics Concert Series; as a guest performer and presenter for the New Music Gathering and Eureka! Musical Minds Conference; and was the 2010 Performance Prizewinner at the soundSCAPE festival in Italy. She is a recipient of the Myrna Loy Center Grants to Artists Award, a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, Earle Brown Music Foundation Grant, New Music USA Project Grant, and a Women’s International Study Center Residency. Jennifer received her Bachelor of Music from the University of South Florida, her Master of Music from The Boston Conservatory, and Doctorate in Contemporary Performance at the University of California in San Diego.
ORIN HILDESTAD is a Los Angeles-based violinist, active in the fields of new, contemporary, experimental, and classical music. He specializes in the interpretation of modern scores and microtonal works. Hildestad performs regularly as both a soloist and chamber musician. He has commissioned and performed a number of works by both established and emerging composers and has worked closely with a range of artists including James Tenney, Michael Pisaro, Mark So, Tashi Wada, Michael Winter, Caroline Chen and many others. Hildestad holds both a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree from the California Institute of the Arts, and is currently working on his dissertation for his Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of California, San Diego.
JAMES KLOPFLEISCH is an experimental composer/performer currently living in Los Angeles. His work lies on the fault line between music + performance/event, realizing itself somewhere between the framing of sound in time and the overlapping of musical context with the structures of colloquial observation habits. He has written for such ensembles/events as: trio kobayashi, thingNY, and The Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space. He is performed frequently in the U.S., periodically in Europe, and often somewhere in-between the two. James earned his Bachelors degree in music from Illinois Wesleyan University and Masters in music from California Institute of the Arts; his teachers have included David Vayo, Michael Pisaro, and Anne LeBaron.
JONATHAN STEHNEY is a bassoonist who's focus has always been contemporary and experimental music. Jonathan has traveled throughout the United States as well as abroad performing new works for bassoon and contrabassoon. He has had the great opportunity to work with new composers on new ways to write for the bassoon, as well as working with known composers such as Sofia Gubaidulina, Pierre Boulez, Peter Eöetvös, Olga Neuwirth, James Tenney, Mark Menzies, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and others. Jon's studies have brought him abroad several times where he studies extensively with Pascal Gallois, Paul Riveaux and the EIC. He received his BFA in performance from Calarts in 2004, where he currently works as the adjunct bassoon teacher. He also completed his masters and PSD from SFCM, and is finishing his DMA at SUNY Stonybrook.
CASSIA STREB is a Los Angeles-based violist, improviser and composer. She is active in the field of contemporary and experimental music, performs regularly as a soloist and a chamber musician, and collaborates with a variety of artists from many disciplines. She performs with the Vinny Golia Large Ensemble, the California EAR Unit, Wadada Leo Smith’s Silver Orchestra and Guthrie & Streb. Cassia is also sought after as a soloist, particularly for her interpretation of modern scores and microtonal works, and she collaborates with many artists from the fields of electronic music, western classical instruments and composes for theatre, dance and film. She has commissioned and performed a number of works by both established and emerging composers and she has worked closely with a range of artists including Christian Wolff, James Tenney, Michael Pisaro Jurg Frey, John Zorn, Morton Subotnik, Mark Trayle, Radu Malfatti and many others. Cassia holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Victoria and a Masters’ degree from the California Institute of the Arts.