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The Wide Alley
Chinese Culture in Flux


The rich musical traditions of China's Sichuan Province meet the Australian avant-garde creations of Clocked Out in an innovative fusion of Chinese and western sounds. Featuring street songs and jazz along with opera and folk, this cross-cultural collaboration draws focus from Chengdu's oldest neighbourhood, the Wide Alley. Pulsating gongs blend with jazz harmonies, clouds of delicate bells envelop soulful melodies, and brash fragments of Sichuan percussion collide with wild free improvisations. The multicultural ensemble (five Sichuan and five Australian musicians) creates unexpected new worlds of sound, bringing disappearing traditions back to life.

A "mesmerizing performance...Tuned gongs and ethnic hand percussion blended with erhu, flutes, piano, brass and bass for a sound that was both reverential and forward thinking, true world music without the baggage of commercial labeling...one of the 2010 Ottawa International Jazz Festival's most unique and thoroughly compelling performances." - John Kelman, All About Jazz, 7 July 2010

"Clocked Out's approach displays a meeting of forms across cultures and musical languages but also allows the musics of Sichuan enough time-space to stand on their own...and the music sounds so very good." - Keith Gallasch, Realtime 90.

"The course of the performance...is an incredible pastiche of genres, and the breadth of dynamics is astonishing." - Scott Spark, www.abc.net.au, 23 July 2007

Commissioned by Paul Grabowsky for the Queensland Music Festival 2007.

Who: Director-piano Erik Griswold Composer-percussion Vanessa Tomlinson composer-vocals Zou Xiangping vocals Tian Linping bamboo flute Shi Lei erhu Zhou Yu trumpet Peter Knight bass trombone Adrian Sherriff bass Robert Davidson Chinese percussion Zhong Kaizhi.
What: Traditional Sichuan music meets Australian avant-garde.
When & Where
14-18 Feb 2011 @ Spring Temple Festival, Chengdu, China
3 Jul 2010 @ Ottawa Int'l Jazz Festival
1 Jul 2010 @ Victoria JazzFest
30 Jun 2010 @ Vancouver Int'l Jazz Festival
6-7 Mar 2009 @ Auckland Festival
1 Mar 2009 @ Sydney Opera House
20-21 Jul 2007 @ Queensland Music Festival


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Arts Queensland Griffith University Australia Council for the Arts Asialink