J. Pavone String Ensemble
Jessica Pavone is a multi-string instrumentalist and composer residing in Queens, NY. While her earliest training was primarily in classical music, after graduating from conservatory, she began exploring other avenues for creative musical expression.
Pavone has received grants and commissions from The American Music Center, New Music USA, Music at the Anthology (MATA), The Jerome Foundation, The Tri-Centric Foundation, Experiments in Opera, and was a composer in residence at Mise-En_Place in 2018. She has premiered new work in venues in New York City such as Roulette Intermedium, Issue Project Room, Abrons Art Center, and The Kitchen.
As an instrumentalist, she has personally worked with and interpreted new music by Aaron Siegel, Elliott Sharp, Glenn Branca, Henry Threadgill, Matana Roberts, Matthew Welch, Tristan Perich, Anthony Braxton, and William Parker.
As a composer, she has released over a dozen albums produced by Tzadik, Taiga Records, Thirsty Ear, Relative Pitch, and Skirl Records.
In 2011, Pavone was featured in NPR’s “The Mix: 100 Composers Under 40" and since, The Wire magazine has praised her “ability to transform a naked tonal gesture into something special,” and The New York Times described her music as "distinct and beguiling...its core is steely, and its execution clear."
As both an instrumentalist and composer, I have regularly and thematically explored tactile experience in my compositions and performances. This is most notable in my solo viola music, where I perform indeterminate pieces that stem from years of concentrated long tone practice, my interest in repetition, song form, sympathetic vibration, and the physicality of playing my somewhat larger-than-comfortable instrument.
Founded in 2017, The Jessica Pavone String Ensemble combines these two modalities as an ensemble I both compose for, and perform in as a violist. The group presents original compositions which expand on the themes of my solo work while also integrating a deeper understanding of the effects sound has on the listener. While these discoveries have been primarily instinctual, I plan to further study these principles more formally by gaining a better understanding of Cymatics.
Ava Mendoza (solo)
AVA MENDOZA is a Brooklyn-based guitarist, singer, songwriter and composer. Born in 1983, she started performing her own music, and as a sidewoman and collaborator in many different projects, as soon as she was old enough to get into 18+ venues. As a guitarist, Mendoza has received acclaim for her technique and viscerality. Her most ongoing work is as leader of experimental rock band Unnatural Ways, and as a solo performer on guitar/voice. In any context she is committed to bringing expressivity, energy and a wide sonic range to the music. Mendoza has toured throughout the U.S. and Europe and recorded or performed with musicians including Carla Bozulich, Fred Frith, Mick Barr, Nels Cline, Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Mike Watt, Matana Roberts, Ikue Mori, Matt Mitchell, Adele Bertei, William Hooker, Jon Irabagon, members of Caroliner, the Violent Femmes, and more. Recordings are available on labels Tzadik, Weird Forest, Clean Feed, NotTwo, Resipiscent, and New Atlantis.
“it’s Brooklyn-via-Oakland six-stringer Ava Mendoza deconstructing of blues and punk into brutal shredfests that’s causing a ruckus in NYC’s DIY hubs." (Brad Cohan, Noisey.Vice)
“At times, her noise-baked badlands blues plays like some epic, elemental cross of Sir Richard Bishop and Earth, but with a wild-child streak. sonic landscapes that are gorgeous, foreboding and sonically feral, it’s a sound at once forward and ancient.” (Bao Le-Huu, Orlando Weekly).
"Mendoza plays these songs. She makes them sing. Her technique is impeccable, but her playing is astonishingly expressive. She doesn't just bend blue notes; she wads them up into a ball and throws them up against a wall... Mendoza knows what she does well, which is tell stories with her guitar. Check that. Mendoza knows what she does better than almost anyone else on the planet, which is tell stories with her guitar." (Aiding and Abetting).