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Welcome to Rewire 2022!

07 Apr 2022

Welcome to Rewire 2022, an edition that has known many different scenarios before being able to settle in this definite, COVID-19 restriction-free, format. Rewire is excited to present a full festival edition in The Hague — for the first time in three years — that reunites audiences and artists from all over the world.

Rewire is once again taking over the city centre for its 11th edition; presenting forward-thinking and genre-bending music across a diverse range of venues. The latest addition to the festival’s locations is Amare, a new cultural hotspot for performing arts in The Hague. The Rewire 2022 programme consists of more than 150 individual events including numerous (inter)national premieres, newly commissioned performances, live concerts, an exhibition of sound art works, an extensive discourse programme, film screenings, and even the return of late-night clubbing.

For its 2022 edition, Rewire is proud to welcome Meredith Monk for a multi-day focus programme. The world-renowned composer, singer and interdisciplinary artist is recognised as one of the most influential names in contemporary music and performing arts. On each day of the festival, Meredith Monk will be presenting works, including a concert version of “Cellular Songs” with her acclaimed Vocal Ensemble, several films, an artist talk and together with the celebrated ensemble Bang on a Can All-Stars, Monk will perform “MEMORY GAME”.

Meredith Monk’s impact on vocalisation and performance can be traced throughout the Rewire 2022 programme. Whether it’s Marina Herlop’s playful and experimental music that evokes the unpredictable vocal treatments of Monk, or Stine Janvin & Ula Sickle’s ‘Echoic Choir’ relying on the power of acoustic voices and spatial resonance. Tarta Relena’s self-described “progressive Gregorian”, traversing the depths of traditional vocal music; M Lamar’s powerful, operatic countertenor voice or Eartheater flexing a three-octave vocal range, all of these artists embody the passion for experimentation and self-expression that Meredith Monk has long evoked.

Challenging the notions of what we perceive as electronic and acoustic music is the performance of “100 Cymbals”, a composition by the Japanese luminary of synthetic music Ryoji Ikeda performed by Les Percussions de Strasbourg. Employing ten percussionists in a geometrical set-up consisting of one hundred cymbals, the typically percussive instrument suddenly becomes a site of harmonic tension, producing alluring and hypnotic sounds that verge on droning synthesisers. Rewire is also proud to present Indonesian composer Dewa Alit and his ensemble Gamelan Salukat. Dewa Alit’s work is grounded in the tradition of Balinese Gamelan; however, he approaches this tradition not as something static, but as a set of concepts and principles that can be used to create something radically new. Alit will present music at Rewire that will inhabit precisely this space between the familiar and the invigoratingly unheard, and highlight Gamelan’s connections to electronic music.

The Rewire 2022 programme combines new and old musical traditions, uncovering new sonic worlds through a series of artists heavily influenced by the music heritage of their home country. The South- Korean musician bela has found a way to transpose sheet music of Nongak, a traditional form of Korean folk music, into riveting power electronics that breaks through conventional rhythmic patterns and tempo limitations. Debit dives deeper into the origins of Mexican music. Using machine learning, she revitalises whistles, ocarinas, flutes and other wind instruments from the archives of the Mayan Studies Institute and instils them with a sense of urgency. Japanese sound artist FUJI|||||||||||TA built a unique pipe organ with eleven pipes, a blacksmith’s air pump and no keyboard. Intended to evoke rich landscapes inspired by the Japanese classical form gagaku. Dasom Baek uses various looping techniques to breathe new life into traditional Korean woodwind instruments such as the Daegeum, Sogeum and Saenghwang. Her contemporary approach to these traditional instruments can be mesmerising, gripping, soothing or unsettling. Naaljos Ljom unlocks the microtonal potential hidden in their source material of Norwegian folk music, mixing it with aspects of electronic music, resulting in spirited pieces that subvert our expectation of what the distinction between analogue and electronic should sound like.

Rewire 2022 will also premiere newly commissioned works, including immersive audiovisual performances by Helm & Nate Boyce, Slikback X Weirdcore, Myxomy (James Ginzburg & Ziúr), Mint Park & Quiet Ensemble, and Soyun Park & Wellgoodness. A collaboration between bass clarinettist Joachim Badenhorst and electronic musician Roman Hiele and the meditative Buzz Bike from Kaffe Matthews.

Proximity Music: Sensing After Thought is a playful and interdisciplinary exhibition taking place in and around the new cultural venue Amare. The exhibition consists of eleven performances and (sound-)artworks that temporarily inhabit and activate the multi-layered foyers and the surrounding streets.

The Rewire 2022 Prelude, taking place on Thursday 7 April, features free concert labelled ‘The Garden of Ryoan-gi’, which offers a retrospective of the nearly complete piano (keyboard) oeuvre of the late composer Louis Andriessen, as well as two free online talks from Luis Manuel Garcia-Mispireta and Stine Janvin & Ula Sickle, and a film entitled 'A Symphony of Noise: Matthew Herbert's Revolution'.

The 2022 discourse programme continues the exploration of the wider context surrounding the performances and projects presented at Rewire. Returning as an in-person festival, it’s been necessary to consider the systems, routines and practices that have been in place and how these have changed or been paused; the way audiences gathered and felt familiar, and how, for many, this feeling of closeness and community may now feel strange and take time to regain. This has resulted into three thematic sections; RITUAL, curated in collaboration with media re-searcher and musician Katía Truijen, functions as a multitude of compositions for cohesion and community. AFFECT, created in collaboration with scholar and curator Luis Manuel Garcia-Mispireta, explores how the notion of affect can help us understand the sensorial and emotional relationship we have to sound and music. NOISE, in collaboration with urban researcher Caroline Claus and Leiden’s Professor of Auditory Culture and Music Philosophy, Marcel Cobussen, challenges us to consider—and reconsider—what the term “noise” means and what it does.

The artists and projects discussed here are just a few of this year’s festival highlights. On our website, festival app and programme booklet you will find a complete guide to the Rewire 2022 programme, although after two years of pandemic: all things are subject to change. Download our festival app or check the website for updates.

We wish you an incredibly inspiring festival!