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Robert Wilson, Jenny Hval and More Featured in National Sawdust's DIGITAL DISCOVERY FESTIVAL

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Robert Wilson, Jenny Hval and More Featured in National Sawdust's DIGITAL DISCOVERY FESTIVAL

Innovation requires the genius to recognize the possible and the single-minded drive to make it a reality. The fourteenth volume of National Sawdust's Digital Discovery Festival celebrates four remarkable artistic minds whose phenomenal creative talent have brought vital innovations to the interconnected worlds of music, theater, visual art and opera.

On August 12, the Digital Discovery Festival is proud to welcome the celebrated playwright and stage director Robert Wilson. For over fifty years, Wilson has been on the vanguard of experimental stagework, building an awe-inspiring curriculum vitae that includes landmark artistic collaborations with Philip Glass, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Lou Reed, Allen Ginsberg and Tom Waits. For this very special event, scheduled on the 18th anniversary of the passing of John Cage, Wilson will present an appreciation of the revolutionary composer with a solo performance of his famed "Lecture on Nothing."

The German-born MacArthur Award winner Trimpin is an interdisciplinary sculptor, inventor and experimental composer known for his wildly creative instrumentation and outré approach to notation. Trimpin will join vocalist Helga Davis and National Sawdust co-founder Paola Prestini on August 14 from his home studio for a Masterclass performance and conversation on the nature and aims of innovation.

Pianist, percussionist and composer Matthew Whitaker is one of America's fastest-rising and best-known young jazz musicians. Following training at both Juilliard and the Harlem School of Arts, Whitaker has made musical appearances on Ellen, The Today Show and Showtime at the Apollo and was the subject of his own 60 Minutes segment. Whitaker will perform a set of self-composed songs, alongside his most recent composition, "A New Day," on August 13.

This weeks' archival release, scheduled for August 10, features Norwegian experimental songwriter and innovator Jenny Hval's 2017 performance at National Sawdust.

National Sawdust's physical doors are still closed but, thanks to a generous grant from the Alphadyne Foundation, the mission of providing artists the resources and support they need to create and present new work continues with the Digital Discovery Festival, featuring over 100 artists from May through August. All past and present Digital Discovery Festival events are accessible on the newly-constructed Live@NationalSawdust website, as well as on Facebook Live, entirely free of charge.

National Sawdust's Digital Discovery Festival

Volume 14: Innovation

Monday, August 10 at Noon: Jenny Hval (Archives Concert)

Wednesday, August 12 at 6pm: Robert Wilson (Special Event)

Thursday, August 13 at 6pm: Matthew Whitaker (Discovery Concert)

Friday, August 14 at 1pm: Trimpin (Masterclass Concert)

Monday, August 10 - First Airing at Noon

JENNY HVAL

First Performed at National Sawdust on December 2017

Stream at Live@NationalSawdust

Jenny Hval, a nominee for the Spellemannprisen award (think Norwegian Grammy), has made a name for herself as a recording artist who fearlessly and pointedly intertwines gender with an avant-garde folk style, both in her native Norway and abroad. Most recently, Hval finished an extensive tour celebrating the fabulous release of her vampire / blood solo album Blood Bitch, provocatively styled "an investigation of ... blood that is shed naturally ... the purest and most powerful, yet most trivial, and most terrifying blood," co-produced by noise artist Lasse Marhaug and herself.

This performance will include Hval's song '"Drive" from the EP Feeling, a project created in collaboration with multi-instrumentalist Håvard Volden.

Wednesday, August 12 - First Airing at 6PM

Robert Wilson

Stream at Live@NationalSawdust

Join us for a Digital Discovery Festival special event with the celebrated playwright and stage director Robert Wilson. For over fifty years, Wilson has been on the vanguard of experimental stage work, building an awe-inspiring curriculum vitae that includes landmark artistic collaborations with Philip Glass, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Lou Reed, Allen Ginsberg and Tom Waits. For this very special event, scheduled on the 18th anniversary of the passing of John Cage, Wilson will present an appreciation of the revolutionary composer with a solo performance of his famed "Lecture on Nothing." Born in Waco, Texas, Wilson is among the world's foremost theater and visual artists. His works for the stage unconventionally integrate a wide variety of artistic media, including dance, movement, lighting, sculpture, music and text. His images are aesthetically striking and emotionally charged, and his productions have earned the acclaim of audiences and critics worldwide. Wilson founded the New York-based performance collective The Byrd Hoffman School of Byrds in the mid-1960s, and developed his first signature works, including Deafman Glance (1970) and A Letter for Queen Victoria (1974-1975). With Philip Glass he wrote the seminal opera Einstein on the Beach (1976). Wilson's artistic collaborators include many writers and musicians such as Heiner Müller, Tom Waits, Susan Sontag, Laurie Anderson, William Burroughs, Lou Reed, Jessye Norman and Anna Calvi. He has also left his imprint on masterworks such as Beckett's Krapp's Last Tape, Brecht/Weill's Threepenny Opera, Debussy's Pelléas et Melisande, Goethe's Faust, Homer's Odyssey, Jean de la Fontaine's Fables, Puccini's Madama Butterfly, Verdi's La Traviata and Sophocles' Oedipus. "[Robert Wilson is] a towering figure in the world of experimental theater and an explorer in the uses of time and space on stage" says The New York Times.

Thursday, August 13 - First Airing at 1PM

MATTHEW WHITAKER

Stream at Live@NationalSawdust

The New Jersey-born pianist, percussionist and composer Matthew Whitaker is one of America's fastest-rising and best-known young jazz musicians. Blind from birth, Whitaker's prodigious talent on the keys won him endorsements from both Yamaha and Hammond by the age of fifteen. Following training at both Juilliard and the Harlem School of Arts, Whitaker has made musical appearances on Ellen, The Today Show and Showtime at the Apollo and was the subject of his own 60 Minutes segment. Whitaker has been a feature performer at Jazz at Lincoln Center, SF Jazz, Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center and the Monterey and Newport Jazz Festivals. Whitaker's latest album, 2019's Now Hear This, features his Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composers Award-winning tracks "Emotions" and "Underground".

Whitaker will perform the latter song within this Digital Discovery Concert as part of a set of self-composed songs, alongside his most recent composition, "A New Day".

Friday, August 14 - First Airing at 1PM

TRIMPIN

Stream at Live@NationalSawdust

Join us for a Masterclass conversation-performance hosted by vocalist Helga Davis and composer and National Sawdust co-founder Paola Prestini who will be joined by the interdisciplinary sculptor, inventor and experimental composer Trimpin. The German-born MacArthur 'Genius Award" winner will join us from his new home studio for a Masterclass performance and conversation on the nature and aims of innovation Trimpin is a German-born composer and sound artist who has lived and worked in Seattle since 1979. His sound sculptures, installations and set designs have been commissioned by artists as diverse as Merce Cunningham, Samuel Beckett and the Kronos Quartet. These works have been exhibited locally, nationally and internationally at spaces including the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco, Circulo De Bellas Artes in Madrid and the LOGOS Foundation in Ghent. Trimpin's awards include the MacArthur Foundation's "Genius Award" and a Guggenheim Fellowship, as well as residencies at numerous art centers, universities and colonies.


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