Press & Testimonials

PRESS & TESTIMONIALS: Performances & Installations (scroll down for reviews and testimonials on writing, editing and facilitation)

[][] “Tina Pearson veut retrouver les racines du son” [tr. “Tina Pearson wants to rediscover the roots of sound”], interview in Le Quotidien – Chicoutimi, September 20, 2019 by Stéphane Bouchard. lequotidien photo screen grab “Compositrice et improvisatrice de la Columbie-Britannique, Tina Pearson veut retrouver les racines du son. Celle quie en residence en september au Centre d’expérimentation musicale (CEM) nous invite a repenser nore relation avenc les sons qui nous entourent. Avenc un groupe d’artistes de la région entiérement feminin, elle sera en concert … ” [tr. BC composer and improvisor Tina Pearson wants to rediscover the roots of sound. She is in residence … at CEM, and invites us to rethin our relationship with the sounds around us. With an all-female group of artists from the region, she will be in concert … at … Les Jardins de Sophie.”] Tina Pearson veut retrouver les racines du son _ Arts _ Le Quotidien – Chicoutimi 

[][] Ohrenhoch Gallery, Berlin, Germany, directors’ comments on the installation Absorb, April 2018 “I wanted to write you about the third Sunday with Absorb, which was very special… Many visitors came to ohrenhoch, and all of them listened so carefully, it was completely magic. A visitor said that while walking around in the cellar spaces he always thought there was someone in the other room … He felt the presence of the voices like persons very close, but not visible.” – Katharina Moos, ohrenhoch

“Last Sunday was beautiful and I sat in front of the ears [speakers] high on a chair and watched as from the ears [speakers] high breath sounds spread out into the wide. The people passing by were standing just in front of the entrance, listening to the breath that made them listen. I am enthusiastic about your work and I thank you for your heart, for your engagement … ” – Knut Remond, ohrenhoch

[][] “Deep Gratitude: Listening For Pauline OliverosWendalyn Bartley in conversation with Tina Pearson”, The Whole Note, Toronto, November 2017 DeepGratitudeNov2017

[][] Comment from Joanne Dean, Facebook, July, 2017: I attended [Root, Blood, Fractal, Breath] last evening at the Allan Gardens [Toronto]. … While moving about with the musicians I was being carried into another form of communication which asked me to listen, surrender, accept. Sometimes the sounds reminded me of animals, city sounds, unknown and unseen sounds. My part being deep listening and totally present. The moment (after about 1 hour) when the music stopped I felt calm and grounded, connected with the plants, insects, people, fish, flowers, inside and outside energies. The silence afterwards was magical. My breath, and inner heart strings all in tune. Everything merging on a different vibration. I carried the feeling home with me on the streetcar in the busy chaotic scramble of the city night. I’m grateful for the experience.

[][] “Songs For Glass Island at Pyatt Hall” — review of Songs For Glass Island, a collaborative work by Camille Norment, Tina Pearson, George Tzanetakis and Paul Walde, by James M., Concert Addicts, Vancouver, April 2016. Review _ CAG presents_ Songs for Glass Island @ Pyatt Hall – April 2016 _ Concert Addicts

“… Songs For Glass Island tells the story from an aural perspective. It was beautiful, it was haunting, and it was no doubt a little bit odd. … Although the piece did not seem to have a traditional narrative, it excelled in capturing not only what you may have heard if you had been present for [Robert Smithson’s] hypothetical Glass Island, but also in displaying an incredible variety of range from one common medium. Each piece of glass held inherent sonic qualities depending on size, shape, and how they were interacted with. … The actual resemblance to recognizable sounds was perhaps the most impressive part. Whale songs, crashing waves, and falling rain seemed to echo through Pyatt Hall as the artists worked their way through the glass menagerie.”

[][] “Art Piece Gets Serious About Animal Mimicry” — preview article about Tina Pearson & Paul Walde’s project Music For Natural History, Times Colonist, Victoria, January 2016 Music For Natural History Times Colonist

[][] “This Band Practices Weekly, But Has Never Met In Person: Second Life’s Avatar Orchestra” article by Daniel Korn about the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse, from an interview with Tina Pearson. Published in Plaid Zebra October 2014.

“You make your way to the concert hall and take your seat. The performance space is a grassy field in the middle of a mountainous enclosure, surrounded on all sides by a baby blue sky filled with clouds that resemble three-dimensional brains and medical diagrams of frog legs. The band sits in the middle of the field on benches made of tree logs. A tall, bearded man is flanked by a blue-skinned gender-neutral genie and a goth woman with teased hair sporting a leather trench coat ripped right out of The Matrix. Then there’s the thin, gangly individual whose sharp features and pastel-coloured garb make her look more like a Picasso painting than a human; some sort of fish-man; and the gargantuan red-spectacled pimp wearing a top hat. Then, they stop talking and begin to rotate as they lightly ascend into the air as a subtle whoosh sound creeps in. In a few minutes, they’re all airborne, the sounds get louder and more intense, and the band’s first piece has begun in earnest.

This is just a typical performance from the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse, a new media collective that performs entirely within the long-running online virtual world of Second Life. The 10-plus members of the group—located anywhere from Canada to Germany—are a varied mishmash of artists, including computer programmer and linguist Andreas Muller, influential electronic music pioneer Pauline Oliveros, and contemporary composer and performer Tina M. Pearson. Pearson, whose avatar goes by the name Humming Pera, handles much of the coordinating of the ensemble. But, as she claims with a chuckle, “there cannot be a leader.”

[][] “Techno Dream and Nightmare Choir” — a consideration by Frank Berry, about Tina Pearson & Liz Solo’s mixed reality community collaboration, July 2012. TechnoDreamNightmareReview

The other night I attended a strange performance. And by strange I mean original, interesting, moving – good. … a group of performers/artists/musicians had gathered to ask themselves a question. Their intention (I believe) was to perform both the question and the myriad of answers (more questions) that the original question evoked. The question was this – What are our fears and dreams of the emerging digital technology? … ONE THING INTO ANOTHER – in this piece found texts from various social media were woven together into a song performed by the artists and participants in the room. This was a very moving piece that allowed us to share our common humanity using both text media and the human voice. … Another beautiful and perhaps strange thing about the night was that I felt that I was at the very beginning of something. That I felt something like that old ape had felt when he knocked a tree limb against a rock and all the other apes looked up. Do it again! Do it again! Make that sound. Tell us something. I felt that I was not in a room of technology whiz kids but in a room where adults were asking valuable questions about the nature of a human creation that was changing our lives. To be in a room where people were asking valuable questions was original enough these days but to see them do it without the smugness of rhetoric but with a true need to ask the questions was as exciting a piece of honest theatre I’ve seen in a long time.”

[][] Review: And Beethoven Heard Nothingby David Ceccetto May 2010

At its base, “And Beethoven Heard Nothing” is a structured improvisation by Victoria’s LaSam that uses Beethoven’s deafness as an occasion to meditate on individual experiences of tinnitus and hearing loss, specifically focusing on how these episodes relate to listening, performing, and conceptualizing music. In some ways, the final result of LaSam’s production is the exact opposite of what Beethoven has come to represent, substituting a haunting inevitability for the latter’s famous dramatic drive. And yet, might there not be a special and specific truth to this? Surrounded by dancing shadows that strain to speak in every way imaginable—instrumental squawks and moans, melodic fragments, multilingual vocalizations, projected historical relics, electronic and physical spatializations, and even the internal machinations of our own ears—the listener hears a tract of time that contextualizes Beethoven work. In this, LaSam finds a breadth that lends breath where the individual symphonies would shout, so that we are led away from the Romantic pathos that has made a caricature of the human being named Beethoven, and towards a deeper empathy for the inexorability of his progressive deafness…a painful progression that LaSam’s work suggests—to my ears—looms close by for all of us who value our hearing in a culture that relentlessly attacks our ears.

PRESS & TESTIMONIALS: Writing & Editing

Musicworks 29: Times and Tides Review by Continuo

Editor, Tina Pearson; Cassette concept: Tina Pearson and John Oswald.

(excerpt) “An ambitious Tina Pearson/John Oswald project, the ‘Times & Tides’ cassette deals with the notion of time in music, taking its sound examples from contemporary Canadian music of the 1980s. It strikes me how various Canadian composers have dealt with this issue from the 1960s till today, think Udo Kasemets or Andrew Timar, for instance. The inclusion of ‘Tides’ embarks lunar influence and cosmological calendars in the project. Additionally, the presence of raga music philosophy (see Trichy Sankaran’s music and interview, tracks #2&3) as well as javanese gamelan music (by Robert W. Stevenson and the Evergreen Club Gamelan Ensemble, Canada’s foremost gamelan ensemble, featured track #7), further widens the scope of time concerns in music. As Sankaran puts it in his interview, in Indian raga, ‘tala’ means time, that is: measure. This gorgeous compilation also include rythm examples from natural sounds, such as human breathing, heartbeats, waves, rooster (early in the morning?), crickets, thunderstorm, clocks sounds, harmonics from slowed down piano notes, …”…”I feel I should mention a few other remarkable things in this release, as well: you will notice from the included info sheet that side A represents one day, with morning, midday and evening tracks matched accordingly. Side B represents 22 cosmological days.”

Musicworks 37: Mechanical Disturbances, especially in air

Editor, Tina Pearson; Cassette production, Tina Pearson and Paul Hodge

Reviewed by Continuo

“Another gem from the awe-inspiring Musicworks series, #37 ‘Mechanical disturbances, especially in air’ focuses on resonant sounds, self build instruments and microtonal compositions, including a native tribe’s drum-song and musique concrète as well. Collectively curated by editor-in-chief Tina Pearson and a team of microtonal specialists, the cassette intertwines ancient, even archaic sounds like church bells or gamelan orchestra, with cutting edge research on microtonality by Ellen Fullman or Gayle Young for instance. The latter was to become Musicworks’ chief editor in 1987. Her piece ‘The Amaranth’ is played on a self-build 24-stringed instrument, while Fullman is on his long string instrument. Both offer gorgeous aural epiphanies based on the strings’ harmonics and small intervals. Tom Nunn plays the Varion, a self-build instrument made of amplified metal parts played with a bow, for a richly textured exploration of its sonic potential. The Fleur d’Esprit is another of his own instrument designs. While you listen to the Evergreen Club Gamelan Ensemble enchanting sounds, it’s good to remember gamelan music is based on very short intervals and metallophone instruments specifically build for the gamelan orchestra, 2 caracteristics of the microtonal composers of today. The following field recordings shows Cree indian native tribe in typical drum-song. The Québec electroacoustic group Sonde (1980-86) contributes 2 tracks of beautiful musique concrète/sound sculptures with effects. Both tracks have been reissued on the CD ‘Sonde en ondes’ on the Oral label, 2007. As usual with Musicworks tapes, the impressive coherence of the track listing combines with musicality of the highest order. The plus and what makes Musicworks unique is a care for parishioners, nature sounds, extra-european music and indian native tribes. Murray Schafer can be proud of his students.”


TESTIMONIALS: Workshop Facilitation

[][] Breath Choir, November-December 2019, Victoria, BC

“Tina created such a safe space for participants to open up and share ideas and experiences. The group was made up of intergenerational and inter-experiential participants, and still Tina managed to facilitate activities where everyone felt equal and safe to step outside of their comfort zones.” — Marina DiMaio

[][]  Deep Listening Into Sounding Workshop, November 2017, Toronto

“Tina has a gentle, grounded presence and speaking voice, which, to me, embodies the practices of deep listening and sounding. I could hear the resonance of her voice calming us and inviting us into an attitude of listening. The whole group seemed to become quiet and enter a space we could feel. The choreography of the evening was remarkable. There was a rhythm as we gradually went inside and then out to join with other sounds and back in again. We entered quiet places and noisy, exuberant places. With Tina’s guidance, the group found a way to inhabit a body of sound together. To me, it was a deeply nourishing experience.” — Ruth Danziger