Events

Bloodlines Fabrica Vitae Tour in London

Bloodlines installation in London this Thursday 27 February, 7pm

Fabrica Vitae Website Launch | Thursday 27 February,7pm

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Bloodlines feature in Times Higher Education

The Times Higher Education have run a well-written feature on the Bloodlines project.

Transplant inspires siblings’ Bloodlines project | News | Times Higher Education.

BloodLines in the Fabrica Vitae touring exhibition

Delighted to learn that the film version of Bloodlines will be featured in the Fabrica Vitae touring exhibition.

Fabrica Vitae is inspired by Andreas Vesalius (1514-1564) and explores art and anatomy through the work of contemporary artists, scientists and thinkers. It will feature work from artists and scientists who are working together to re-imagine and extend the understanding of the human body.
More details will be available after Feb. 27th on www.fabrica-vitae.com.
The first Fabrica Vitae exhibition will take place in Zakynthos, Greece in May 2014.

The Splice Symposium

Announcing a 2-day symposium (November 15-16 2013 at University of Notre Dame in Central London) examining the process, philosophy and products of collaborations between scientists, musicians and performing artists. It’s hosted and organised by me and my sister Dr. Alex Mermikides, and is an output of the Chimera Network – and AHRC-supported project promoting Art/Sci research.

Presentation and paper proposals

Book a place

Splice-Symposium-Flyer

Bloodlines Premiere

Bloodlines is a performance that traces the microscopic drama that plays out between a serious disease and medical treatment in the human body. It draws on its makers’ personal experience of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (which I developed in 2004) and its treatment through intensive chemotherapy, radiotherapy and a bone marrow transplant (donated by his sister Alex Mermikides, who is directing the performance). Also collaborating in the performance is Ann Van de Velde, a clinical haematologist involved in the care and treatment of blood disorders such as Leukaemia, and Anna Tanczos, a digital artist specialising in science communication.

‘…is the human body a soul-less, self-less object at the mercy of automatic internal processes…or is it a precious vessel containing a unique individual…?’

Sian Ede Art & Science. London and New York: Taurus Books, 2010. p.145

Bloodlines premiered at the Dana Centre on 18 July 2013. Future performances will be announced on the Events page.

Here’s a bootleg from the first performance.

Bloodlines is a Chimera Network project
For more background on the project see Bloodlinesproject.com

All at in C

On the 14th October 2013, I’ll be joining the eminent musician and fellow Wodehouse character Peter Gregson at the Luton Music Club to max out on Minimalism. Details to follow, but on the programme is Terry Riley’s seminal work In C in all its heterophonic and generative gorgeousness.

In C

Rather than play it (on my guitar) traditionally with the ensemble, I thought it fun (and more interesting) to use Ableton Live (and Push) to rebuild it so it ran generatively. I’ve done a very simple version which adopt most of the instructions, any errors kindly forgive me and my future generations.

 

Here’s a screenshot of the resultant tapestry:

In-C-Live

And here’s the WIP for your to download in the spirit of musical democracy.

In C Live Project @miltonline

Hit scene 1 and they’ll tumble through, I’ve weighted the follow actions to have on average more repeats on shorter phrases which makes sense musically. You can intervene, urging on any stragglers and holding back any clips forging too far ahead. Actually I may need to consult a statistician as the deviation in fall rates seems (in my fallible intuition) to suggest something’s a bit skewy with the randomising process. But oh well, the variation in performances is intriguing (I’m on listen number 6 and still very happy). You can of course ride volumes, edit instruments and send out effects to your ears’ content. You can always set clip 53 to – rather than stop – return to clip 1 so the piece lasts forever, with clips lapping each other – adding another dimension to the work. If Follow Actions in Live were more sophisticated or I had time to render in Max the clips could behave more intelligently by grouping together, dropping out and changing velocity more responsively as per score instructions, but it actually works quite beautifully as is, which is a testament to the power of Riley’s concept.

Incidentally if you’d like to tweak the ‘fall rate’ – and hence the resulting approximate duration – change this number on the clips (you can select multiple), but remember that you may want longer clips with lower numbers. Again I wish there was more sophistication with follow actions, which would also allow the pulse to stop after all other clips are finished, but I await Ableton Live 10 11 17

Follow

Thanks to user Jeepee on the Ableton forum, whose patch I discovered when googling this idea, I’ve kept many of Jeepee’s clips as I like how he/she played them, but am also thinking of doing it PROPERLY in Max and crowdsourcing midi and audio clips from the interwebs when the Earth slows and there’s enough hours in the day for such mischief.

For those sensible people not in to Ableton or this sort of thing, you can hear a rendered version from this patch here:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

(If that doesn’t buffer or you are a suffering iPad browser) -> In C Live

 

Bloodlines at the Dana Centre, Science Museum, July 18th 7-9pm

Live lecture/performance of BloodLines at the Dana Centre, Science Museum. Thursday July 18th, 7-9pm.

 

Diagnosed with Leukaemia, John was given hours to live – but survived thanks to a bone marrow donation. How can ethically sourced stem cells save lives? Experience an immersive and exploratory performance created by a survivor and his donor.

John’s disease, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia, is ‘a deadly disease for which the best available therapy is only applicable to a fraction of patients and is itself potentially lethal’ (Dr Adele K. Fielding, Haematologist UCL). That therapy – a transplant of blood stem cells – is both potentially lethal and life saving. It is also miraculous, mysterious and slightly macabre.

Bloodlines conveys the science and the experience of this last chance treatment in a performance featuring a haematologist, a musical score created from blood cell counts, kaleidoscopic visual effects and dance. Join us in the Dana Cafe after the performance for a discussion with the makers: learn more about stem cells and becoming a donor and about this collaboration between artists and medical scientists.

Bloodlines Team:


Alex Mermikides: stem cell donor and direction

Milton Mermikides: leukaemia survivor and music

Ann Van de Velde: haematologist and performer

Anna Tanczos: videoscape

Adam Kirkham: dance

Bex Law: dramaturgy

More details about Bloodlines can be found here. This event is supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Spiked

Out of nowhere (well somewhere obviously) I’ve been asked to step in the guitar shoes with The Spike Orchestra. I’ve not heard of these people before, but I’m glad I have a quick listen reveals a sophisticated, witty, complex and satisfying original blend of Naked City, cartoon composer Carl Stalling, Kenny Wheelery contemporary jazz, rock and something unnameable. My first concert with them will be Sept 13th 2013 at the Forge, Kingston and I can’t wait to get stuck into/get roasted by the spaghetti charts.

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Alexia Coley in Paradise

It’s a real pleasure to be Alexia Coley‘s guitarist. She has the most wonderful and authentic blues soul voice. After her fresh signing, there’s a slew of gigs coming up including a monthly residency at the luxurious Paradise Club Next Gig: 3rd May.

“If Otis Redding had a child with Sade, Amy Winehouse and Etta James, She might sound something like this.” says Mike Benhaim of Metro Canada with no respect for current fertility technologies.

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Electronics with Ruthless Jabiru

On May 9th, I’ll be playing with the fab (almost) all-Australian Orchestra Ruthless Jabiru under the directorship and baton of Kelly Lovelady.

I’ll be performing live electronics with the 18-piece ensemble, for Brett Dean’s fabulous Carlo. Which interweaves multiple fragments of renaissance composer Carlo Gesualdo’s vocal works (of which I am great admirer) among the live orchestral passages. Originally written for sampler and CD, I’m reworking the electronics for Ableton Live to be triggered via Launchpad (assuming my Push won’t reach me by then). It’s quite a tricky score and electronic fiddle but potentially very powerful.

We’ll be performing in the incredible Exhibition Hall of London’s Australia House (which you may recognise as Gringott’s Wizarding Bank).Ticketing info here. Magic.

The Myth of the Muse

Presenting at the Neuroscience of Imagination event at the British Library alongside Blind Summit Theatre, Pulitzer-nominated author Arthur I. Miller, Professor of neuroscience Vincent Walsh and Chiara Ambrosio was a real joy. You can hear my talk on the Myth of the Muse (essentially how composers and improvisers come up with stuff) in the video below.

 

The Performing Brain

Here’s a video of the presentation at the British Library on March 12th 2012. In preparation for the lecture I was put in an MRI machine with a plastic fretboard (aka ruler) and improvised while UCL neuroscientist Dr. Joern Diedrichsen examined my brain’s working. For the event I performed to a video of my brain activity showing what bits lit up (technical) during improvisation.

On musical learning and Pat Martino.

And my brain on jazz.

Performer vs. Audience

Performer vs. Audience Vertical.jpg

Gig! Fri 18/3/11 Union Chapel Swingle Singers & Urban Big Band. Tippett & Ellington.

This should be a great gig*. The awesome Swingle Singers with Urban Big Band. (I’ll be on guitar duties)

Come if you can. Come as you are. Come on Eileen. Come on, come on. Etc.

http://www.unionchapel.org.uk/events.php?gig=b6c16f5e-2434-479e-a7ab-50df22f5…

Thankyoutimes.

Maria-Christina: Harp & Electronics.

Here’s a short video of my (gorgeous) cousin Maria-Christina (Winner of the Wales International Harp Competition) on harp and electronics.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4bopHmiTVE&w=640&h=390]

Vrooom performed by George Hrab & Milton Mermikides

Under-rehearsed but overly fun performance with George Hrab at Surrey SkepSoc.

Milton in Concerts.

Hello All, Just to update you on some concerts this March, I hope you can make them- it would be so good to meet up with some of you out there- so please consider coming- all information is below.

You may be interested to know that Milton’s Eclectic Guitar Orchestra (EGO) is performing at the Guildford Music Festival:

DATE: Sunday 18th March 2007, 12pm (noon)
VENUE: Studio One, PATS, University of Surrey, Guildford
TICKETS:

Crappy Blue Deer!

…I mean Happy New Year. Hope you all had good ones. I indeed had a good one despite some health hiccups (Infection then a weird allergic reaction that made my top lip swell up so that I looked like Mick Jagger from the mouth up) Spent Christmas in the Lake District with the inlaws. Twas fun. Pics to follow.

I have been silly busy and it’s getting worse. Preparing for concerts Click for a new EGO concert and my trio Rat Park’s first BIG gig, as well as some other things I’m up to. Collaborating with Brian Eno to create music for Koshino’s Tokyo Fashion show, some classical recording, sessions, concerts yadayada. All good stuff. Bridget is in this month’s Guitar Techniques Magazine performing ‘Recuerdos de la Alhambra’ on the included DVD- it’s amazing, check it out if you like (you can find it in WHSmiths)

Bridge and I have some good stuff planned for 2007, I will keep you all in the proverbial loop. I have a new promo site for my music if you want to read my happenings in more detail

Anyway I have to sleep, but I wish you all the best 2007 you could ever have.

Love,

Milt 🙂

Beat this

Spent a glorious Sunday, photographing Bridget’s awesome new (all-girl) Blues band, Rogue Dolls. They are all really talented and I look forward to when they are out gigging. Ruth is an awesome keyboardist, saxophonist and singer. Daisy may we be one of the best drummers I have ever met. Katya is the songwriter, singer and performer. You all know the guitarist Bridget. Belle, the bass player also happens to be a world-class beat-box artist. You must check out the impromptu performance she did for me here – It is unbelievable.

Girls are cool.

Boys smell.

Tomorrow’s Nostalgia: Day +294

The show was awesome.

How good was it? If you had the misfortune of not being there, I’m sorry to say you really missed out – come to the next one! All the players had a marvellous time, If the audience enjoyed it half as much as we did, then it was a truly great show.
Everything that could have gone wrong before the concert, did: I had to reprint 145 programmes because of a serious error, despite specific instructions the hall was literally FREEZING on the day- MASSIVELY compromising the rehearsals and physical preparation for the show (the classical guitarists suffered terribly from frozen fingers and performed formidably in the face of adversity)- noisy industrial heaters were brought in hours later-but the damage was done. Thanks Venezuela! May I remind you that this country is bloody freezing in January!
Oh yes and the car got towed while we were unloading gear. BAR STAR DOZE. But despite everything the gig was really great, I will be updating the pictures very soon.

While the show was just storming on, my great friend Steve Goss said to me “You realize that this is tomorrow’s nostalgia?” Nicely put.

My profoundest thanks to all the wonderful guitarists: Bridget, Steve Goss, Gary Ryan, Graham Roberts, Tristan Seume, Pete Callard, Chris Montague and… John Williams

Huge gratitude to all the audience and everyone else who supported the event.

If I had to choose between never having leukaemia or having battled leukaemia and getting the opportunity to have life experiences like this one – it would be a no-brainer 🙂

PICTURE APPEAL

Were you at the concert? Did you take any pics or movies? If so please contact me. I’d love to see them.

Thanks! Milton

If you are interested in attending future events, stay tuned…

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