Monica Germino – violin / electric violin / voice
Frank van der Weij – sound design
a program for violinist and sound designer, featuring violin, electric violin, voice, installations, images, and sound manipulation
with thrilling works by David Dramm – Donnacha Dennehy – Arnoud Noordegraaf – Catherine Kontz – Julia Wolfe – J.S. Bach
"Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible". - Frank Zappa
Monica Germino and Frank van der Weij chosen for Reviewers’ Choices for Best Musical Events of 2013
-SEEN AND HEARD INTERNATIONAL
"In a program for violin and electronics at the Austrian Cultural Forum, Amsterdam-based Monica Germino showed the power of savvy programming, with Frank van der Weij using technology about as perfectly as it gets."
PREMIERE: 8 SEPTEMBER 2010 Gaudeamus Music Week (co-sponsor). venue: Bimhuis, in Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ
UK PREMIERE: 23 NOVEMBER 2010 Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival (co-sponsor)
Further performances throughout Europe and the USA
David Dramm: Fuzz Box Logic (2010)*
- for Electric violin, 5 Fuzzboxes and Soundtrack - click for video
Julia Wolfe: With a blue dress on (2010) (‘for multiple Monica’s’)^ - click for video excerpt
- for violin, voice, sound manipulation and electronics
Donnacha Dennehy: Overstrung (2010)^ - for amplified acoustic violin and electronics - click for video
Arnoud Noordegraaf: Fugue (2010)^
- for acoustic and adapted violin and film -click for video
Catherine Kontz: 4½ tatami (2010)^
- for solo violin, Violectra (electric violin), voice, effects, projection and installation
J.S Bach: TBA
-program may vary according to each venue-
In DEVIATION, defined as ‘departure from a standard or norm’, Monica challenges herself, sound engineer Frank van der Weij and the composers to be true deviants, to ignore any supposed limits or boundaries, to transform sound, execute unconventional feats and exploit new technologies for the metamorphosis of new music.
Collaborating with composers from all over the world, the American-born, Amsterdam-based violinist Monica Germino is a pioneer in new techniques. Her defiance of (together with a healthy respect for) tradition has led her to seek out and encourage the adventurous, the daring and the new. Monica has been a muse for a number of composers, among them Heiner Goebbels, Louis Andriessen, and Jacob TV, all of whom have written works for her. This latest program showcases the younger generation, with newly commissioned works for violin and sound engineer by by five composers from four countries: Julia Wolfe, David Dramm, Donnacha Dennehy, Catherine Kontz and Arnoud Noordegraaf.
Monica has worked together with the phenomenal sound artist Frank van der Weij for many years. Her solo shows are the result of a team effort: a celebration of a collaboration illustrating an ideal relationship between performer and technician, as noted by The Daily Telegraph: ‘Monica Germino, a vividly personable player on the electric and "normal" violin, works with a sound engineer to transform her violin at one moment into a colossally deep double bass, the next into a wailing electric guitar. …musicians and "players" of electronic gear simply coming together to make music - the results were entrancing.'
Monica combines other elements with her acoustic and electric violins, starting with her own voice. Her performances featuring singing and playing have garnered critical acclaim: ‘...the dazzling violinist Monica Germino’ The Observer (UK); ‘it was when her voice kicked in on top that her astonishing range was revealed… an extraordinary musician who managed to pull off that double feat with grace and skill….’ Feast of Music (NY)
"When I was in Conservatory, I was lucky to be surrounded by free thinkers and rigid idealists alike. I felt restricted by the format of what everyone accepted as the perfectly structured recital. Opening piece, unaccompanied work, sonata, major work, showpiece. Come out, bow, play, bow, leave. Repeat.
Why am I talking about the trappings? Well, suppose we turned that inside out. Don’t let anyone’s attention wander. Or if it does, make it worth their while. Create a ‘recital’ that is a unified show. Open the performer’s and the audience’s ears. Question the standard format. Number one will always be the music; without good music these sorts of experiments are doomed to fail."
this program was made possible with support from:
Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival
Eduard van Beinum Foundation
Nederlands Fonds voor Podiumkunsten+
For more press about Monica and Frank's shows: press
"Monica Germino Puts Electronics and Violin Together, and Myriad Sounds Ensue" - by Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim
'…a gloriously free and wild fiddle tantrum in which virtuosity and mischief-making went hand in hand.' (Julia Wolfe's recent work, With a blue dress on)
'…the American-Dutch violinist Monica Germino presented the fruits of a very different partnership: violin and electronics. Together with her regular collaborator, the electronic sound designer Frank van der Weij, she performed a half-dozen new works by American and European composers in which Mr. van der Weij’s digital wizardry amplified, distorted, fragmented and multiplied the voice of the solo violin. Part of the fun lay in the discovery of the resulting cool and unusual sounds, which ranged from Jimi Hendrix to radio-jamming signals and fire engine sirens. But Ms. Germino’s interest clearly lies in the dramatic possibilities of a partnership that is ultimately focused on empowering the violinist.'
'...an arresting duality of sound and image...psychologically dark and unsettling...earthy and sharp pizzicati...snapping brain synapses...tapped, stomped, played, hummed and sang...a gloriously free and wild fiddle tantrum…virtuosity and mischief-making...digitally processed harmonics...emotional highlight...sonic mayhem...astonishingly rich...virtuosic violin line...rock ’n’ roll moment...binary fire-engine siren...constantly changing sonic environment...juicy double-stopped glissandi...electronic fireworks...affecting vulnerability…'
The Strad Magazine
Sophistication and showmanship - by Bruce Hodges
click for complete review:
"…Monica Germino gave a veritable masterclass on the use of violin and electronics, packed with sophistication and showmanship."
"a violinist who leaves no elements to chance"
"electronics wizard Frank van der Weij"