Bang on a Can
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Bang on a Can is a multi-faceted classical music organization based in New York City. It was founded in 1987 by three American composers who remain its artistic directors: Julia Wolfe, David Lang, and Michael Gordon. It is a major force in the presentation of new concert music, and has presented hundreds of musical events worldwide.
Notable performances 
Bang on a Can is perhaps best known for its Marathon Concerts  during which an eclectic mix of pieces are performed in succession over the course of many hours while audience members, who are encouraged to maintain a "jeans-and-tee-shirt informality," are welcome to come and go as they please. For the twentieth anniversary of their Marathon Concerts, Bang on a Can presented twenty-six hours of uninterrupted music at the World Financial Center Winter Garden Atrium in New York City.
Among the many Bang on a Can events were performances by John Cage, premieres of Glenn Branca’s epic symphonies for massed electric guitars, and fully staged operas of Harry Partch, featuring the composer's original instruments.
In 2002, Bang on a Can began the yearly Summer Institute of Music, a program at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) for young composers and performers. This program is sometimes referred to by the nickname "Banglewood" in reference to the nearby, but far more traditional Tanglewood Music Festival.
The three artistic directors occasionally collaborate by jointly composing a large work, often without revealing which sections each contributed. Examples include:
- The Carbon Copy Building - a "comic book opera" with words and drawings by MacArthur Grant recipient Ben Katchor. It was the winner of the 2000 Obie Award for Best New American Work.
- Lost Objects - a contemporary oratorio, with a libretto by Deborah Artman. It is a fusion of baroque music and modern soundscapes, rendered in performance by the original instruments ensemble Concerto Köln with four electronic instruments, three solo vocalists, a choir, and a live remix generated by DJ Spooky.
- The New Yorkers - a staged multimedia concert with additional contributions by filmmakers and visual artists including: Ben Katchor, Bill Morrison, Doug Aitken, and William Wegman.
- Shelter - a multi-media work that in the words of librettist Deborah Artman, "evokes the power and threat of nature, the soaring frontier promise contained in the framing of a new house, the pure aesthetic beauty of blueprints, the sweet architecture of sound and the uneasy vulnerability that underlies even the safety of our sleep."
People's Commissioning Fund 
Bang on a Can has commissioned and premiered pieces by composers including Steve Reich, Terry Riley, Michael Nyman, John Adams, Somei Satoh, Iva Bittová, Roberto Carnevale, Ornette Coleman, Donnacha Dennehy and Bun-Ching Lam. In 1998 the organization began the People's Commissioning Fund  which supports the creation of new musical compositions by pooling contributions from numerous member-commissioners whose donations range from $5 to $5,000. To date, this fund has commissioned:
- 1998 Virgil Moorefield, Pamela Z, Dan Plonsey
- 2000 Marc Mellits, Edward Ruchalski, Miya Masaoka, Toby Twining
- 2001 Jeffrey Brooks, Sussan Deyhim, James Fei, Keeril Makan
- 2002 Eve Beglarian, John King, Matthew Shipp
- 2003 Annea Lockwood, Ingram Marshall, Thurston Moore
- 2005 Cynthia Hopkins, Carla Kihlstedt, J.G. Thirlwell
- 2006 Yoav Gal, Annie Gosfield, John Hollenbeck
- 2007 Stefan Weisman, Joshua Penman, Lukas Ligeti
- 2008 Tristan Perich, Erdem Helvacioglu, Ken Thomson
- 2009 Lee Ranaldo, Kate Moore, Lok Yin Tang, David Longstreth (of Dirty Projectors)
Bang on a Can is associated with the whimsical SPIT Orchestra, and a pre-eminent chamber ensemble, the Bang on a Can All-Stars  which in 2005 was named "Ensemble of the Year" by the Musical America International Directory of the Performing Arts. The personnel and instrumentation of the Bang on a Can All-Stars is Evan Ziporyn, clarinet and saxophone; Mark Stewart, electric guitar; Ashley Bathgate, cello; Robert Black, double bass; Vicky Chow, keyboards; and David Cossin, percussion.
In the past, Bang on a Can released recordings on Composers Recordings Inc. (CRI), Sony Classical, Point Music (Universal), and Nonesuch, but now the majority of its recordings are found on its own record label, Cantaloupe Music. In addition to releasing works by Gordon, Wolfe, and Lang, the label releases CDs of music by composers and musical groups affiliated with the organization, including Evan Ziporyn, Phil Kline, Alarm Will Sound, Icebreaker, Ethel, Gutbucket, R. Luke DuBois, and Don Byron.
Below is a partial discography of released works performed by Bang on a Can or Bang on a Can All-Stars.
Bang on a Can discography 
- 2001: In C (composed by Terry Riley)
- 2002: Classics
- 2002: Gigantic Dancing Human Machine (composed by Louis Andriessen)
- 2006: The Carbon Copy Building
- 2006: A Ballad For Many
- 2008: Music for Airports (Live) (composed by Brian Eno)
Bang on a Can All-Stars discography 
- 1992: Live Vol. 1
- 1993: Live Vol. 2
- 1994: Live Vol. 3
- 1995: Industry
- 1997: Lost Objects
- 1998: Music for Airports (composed by Brian Eno)
- 2001: Renegade Heaven
- 2004: Bang on a Can Meets Kyaw Kyaw Naing
- 2012: Big Beautiful Dark and Scary
Notes and references 
- "the country's most important vehicle for contemporary music", San Francisco Chronicle
- Marathon page Bang on a Can website
- Summer Festival page on Bang on a Can website
- People's Commissioning Fund page on Bang on a Can website
- All Stars page on Bang on a Can website
- Cantaloupe Music website
- "Albums by Bang on a Can". Last.fm. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "In C". Bang on a Can Store. Archived from the original on 21 April 2010. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Classics". Bang on a Can Store. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Gigantic Dancing Human Machine". Bang on a Can Store. Archived from the original on 21 April 2010. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "The Carbon Copy Building". Bang on a Can Store. Archived from the original on 26 April 2010. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "A Ballad For Many". Bang on a Can Store. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Music For Airports (Live)". Bang on a Can Store. Archived from the original on 18 April 2010. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Industry". Bang on a Can Store. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Music For Airports". Bang on a Can Store. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Renegade Heaven". Bang on a Can Store. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- "Bang on a Can Meets Kyaw Kyaw Naing". Bang on a Can Store. Archived from the original on 18 September 2010. Retrieved October 2, 2010.