Free Parking for improvisation in multiple environments.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Vitamin S @ Odeon, Monday 7th February 2005

The Vitamin S collective kicked off 2005 (2002 edition still audible online here) with several bangs, burps, scrapings and whimpers at the Odeon in Mount Eden last night. The evening was a bit of a free-for-all, with a bunch of players turning up with their weapons. Names were added to the imaginary hat, and 5 trios/quartets were created. Reformed Pom Paul Buckton is doing a great job pulling it all together in Drew's absence.

I was selected to open proceedings with Nigel Gavin on banjo and Erykah Lindsay on vocals, then a quartet including Matt Brennan (the velvet smog), Paul Winstanley (electric bass, whistle, cymbals and electric toothbrush) and John Kennedy (floor tom and signal processing) pushed things towards darker, more muscular territories. A rather lovely chamber trio then took to the floor in the form of Bucko (guitar), Trudy Lisle (flute) and Sam Hamilton (broken cello and car keys). Tim Sutton (bass trombone) and bandito tenor Eamonn Deverall performed the tango of the dying swans, with Attenborough-style commentary provided by Phil Dryson on christmas stocking novelty guitar and noisily deflating balloon. (Mr Dryson's bursting of the balloon in a climactic final staccato was an unforgettable coup-de-théâtre.) The ultimate quartet of the night tilted at windmills, harnessing the massed forces of two basses, clarinet and Phil Dadson on prepared piano.

If this first outing is anything to go by, Vitamin S 2005 should be most interesting and the Auckland improv scene seems as vital as ever. The collision of past masters with new blood promises fun and entertainment for the whole family. Be there at the Wine Bar in St Kevin's Arcade next Wednesday 16th Feb to witness the start of the formal(dehyde) programme of trios!


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