The music of Robert Ashely, for two or more voices, 7 March 2015

In celebration of the recent publication of Yes, But Is It Edible, the editors of the book, Will Holder and Alex Waterman, will read duets from the operas of Robert Ashley.

The Leeds Library
18 Commercial Street, Leeds, LS1 6AL
7 March 2015
Doors: 1.45pm; reading: 2–3pm
Entry free
Book online or email

Yes, But Is It Edible?
Edited by Will Holder and Alex Waterman.
Published by New Documents, 2014

Some years ago we proposed to Robert Ashley that musicians and non-musicians might produce new versions of his operas, by way of typographical scores. The bulk of this book is a result of that proposal: scores for Dust (1998) and Celestial Excursions (2003). These operas’ characters have, until now, been solely produced by and are the stories exchanged between Ashley and his “band” (singers Sam Ashley, Joan La Barbara, Thomas Buckner, and Jacqueline Humbert); in landscapes (technological, imaginary, acoustic, organisational, sonic, ocular) produced by “Blue” Gene Tyranny, Tom Hamilton, David Moodey, Cas Boumans, and Mimi Johnson—the result of a thirty-year relationship. Any “scores,” as such, weren’t written for this intimate readership. It hadn’t been considered that any one outside this “band” might produce this work.
The scores for Dust and Celestial Excursions are preceded by a selection of Ashley’s work, from 1963 to 2008, drawing attention to the varying relations between instruction and score, and the tones of instructional address. Working with these scores gave us a better sense of how each one produces a specific mode of decision-making, telling us what to put on the pages of the scores, for any reader who follows.

This is the fourth in a series of publications produced with or by Holder and Waterman, a musicological perspective on scoring speech, and the role of printed matter in collective forms of reading and writing: Agapē (Miguel Abreu Gallery, 2007); Between Thought and Sound (The Kitchen, 2008); The Tiger’s Mind (with Beatrice Gibson, Sternberg Press, 2012); Yes, But Is It Edible? (New Documents, 2014).

Other European tour dates:

Friday March 6th, 7pm
Tramway (icw. LUX Scotland)
25 Albert Drive, Glasgow G41 2PE

Saturday March 7th, 2pm
Leeds Library (icw. Pavilion)
18 Commercial Street, Leeds LS1 6AL

Sunday March 8th, 4.30pm
Café Oto
18-22 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL

Tuesday March 10th, 7pm
Fondation Lafayette
46 rue Sainte-Croix-de-la-Bretonnerie 75004 Paris

Wednesday March 11th, 7pm
La Loge
Kluisstraat / Rue de l’Ermitage 86 1050 Brussels

Friday March 13th, 7pm
De Rode Bioscoop (icw. Kunstverein Amsterdam)
Haarlemmerpln 7, 1013 HP Amsterdam

Sunday March 15th, 7pm
Skalitzer Straße 68 10997 Berlin