Carl Testa’s Sway Sextet with Patrick Carey
doors at 7:30 PM
The New Haven bassist Carl Testa presents a rich and colorful electroacoustic sound palette for violin, cello, bass, trumpet, vibraphone, voice, and live computer processing.
Carl Testa is a multi-instrumentalist and composer at the intersection of improvised, electronic, experimental music, and new media. As a performer/improviser, he is equally comfortable on string bass, electronics, lighting, and combinations thereof. As a composer, he has written acoustic and electronic music for configurations ranging from solo to chamber orchestra, including multimedia pieces that incorporate electronics, lighting, dance, and theater. His work has been performed throughout the US and Europe, and is documented on many recordings, most recently “Iris (for solo bass and electronics)” (Lockstep Records 2013), and “Sⁿ (for prepared guitar and electronics)”, a collaboration with guitarist Christopher Riggs (Gold Bolus Records 2015).
In addition to his work as a leader/collaborator, he performs regularly with composers Anthony Braxton, Mario Pavone, and Tyshawn Sorey. He serves as the Director of Publishing and Creative Technology for Braxton’s Tri-Centric Foundation where he manages all facets of the production of digital and print scores for the organization. He is the production manager for noted jazz venue and record label Firehouse 12. He also organized The Uncertainty Music Series from 2007-2017, which was a monthly concert series in New Haven, CT featuring improvised, electronic, and experimental music. He has received support from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, the State of CT as a 2018 Artist Fellow, from the New Haven Department of Cultural Affairs, and from NewMusicUSA.
Of the Sway project, Carl explains, “Sway is the name I have given to my live processing environment for any number of musicians. It is an example of an interactive music system like George Lewis’s Voyager or Pauline Oliveros’s Expanded Instrument System. It differs from those systems in that it is an autonomous system focused on live processing audio input. Any number of inputs can be processed, the only limitation is that of the host computer’s processor speed/memory and number of microphone inputs available. The goal of the system is to create a dynamic, constantly shifting electro-acoustic environment around a group of musicians that embodies my compositional aesthetics around live electronic processing. The practical result is that I can return to performing on string bass and leave the processing role to be done solely by the computer.”