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Ice Station Zero 2.0: Frankensteinway

As part of CFEVA’s Post Open Studio Tour 2023.

Collaborative duo: Taji Ra’oof Nahl (aka TR7) and

John Schlesinger present an installation with performances:

‘Frankensteinway v2.0’ @ The House of Schlesinger

3419 Hamilton st. Philadelphia, 19104

October 21-22 (this Saturday and Sunday)

Installation open from 12--6pm.

Saturday Activations:

Through the rubric of TR7’s “The Other Sounds of Philadelphia“ two sets of audio/visual “activation” will take place.

1pm activation – “52 street Planetary Ensemble”; featuring

RyRy (from Joji) - percussion and assorted instruments

Ihba Baskette - winds and skins

Shakoor Hakeem-conga

TR7 - prepared piano, electronics & vocals

Special invited guests

4pm activation – “Sonic Sculpture Ensemble”; featuring

TR7 - prepared piano, electronics & vocals.

Pete Angevine-percussion

Ann Adachi-Flute

Special invited guests

Sunday Activations; 1 and 4 pm:

With special invited guests:

Taji Ra’oof Nahl and John Schlesinger have been working together informally on each other’s installations since 2020. Frankensteinway marks their first major collaboration. The installation has been heavily modified in the past year.

A dilapidated Steinway piano in Schlesinger’s living room has been heavily ‘prepared’ internally (ala John Cage or Ben Patterson) with surgical forceps and other medical instruments to dramatically modify its sound. Physically it has been transformed with scrap stainless steel, video projectors and monitors, photography, aluminum rod, laboratory clamps and over 200 linear feet of salvaged commercial neon, all streaming from its open guts and attaching to the upper walls and ceiling. Much as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was created by surgically cobbled together corpses, our piano mimics this experiment-gone-wrong with laboratory apparatus, beakers and flashing neon, giving the illusion of science temporarily being in control.

Functionally, Frankensteinway serves as the hinge or pivot transforming a living room re-purposed into a hub or locus for musicians to meet, collaborate and take risks as an auditory response to the installation. The performances are videotaped and photographed, and this documentation is then woven back into the work adding layers of history. Thus, this perpetually unfinished installation continually grows throughout the house and mutates over time as musicians perform and as TR7 and Schlesinger add to it physically. The work auto-modifies itself.

We hope you'll be able to stop by and check this out.

Please note:

Seating may be limited

Children should be closely monitored




Instagram: @johnschlesinger

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