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Shaw Pong Liu

Boston, MA   

Violinist and composer Shaw Pong Liu creates site-specific performances which interplay improvised music, multi-disciplinary collaboration, and audience interaction. Recent creative projects include Arise, a site-specific composition for 18 string players incorporating three years of birdsong research and musician interviews into a multi-tiered surround-sound exploration of mental calm and frenzy; Soldiers’ Tales Untold, a musical-narrative production mixing veterans’ stories, live music, and audience dialogue about war; and 2,3,4.., a collaborative performance-installation with painter, choreographer, dancers, musicians, and interactive sensor technology.

Other recent collaborations include composing music and performing as violinist, vocalist and aerialist in Ted Hughes’ Tales From Ovid, a critically-acclaimed collaboration with Whistler in the Dark theatre company and ArtsEmerson, re-telling Greek myths with aerial silks and original music; and performing improvised music with composer and clarinetist Evan Ziporyn as part of an art installation by Matthew Ritchie at the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston.

Shaw Pong is founder of the 99% String Quartet and SQUEE (String Quartets Everywhere), bringing live string quartets to cafes, subways and other public spaces in Boston. An avid explorer of new sounds, Shaw Pong has premiered new works with groups including Bang-On-A-Can All-Stars, MIT’s Gamelan GalakTika, and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, and has received commissions for her compositions from A Far Cry, Dialogue Chamber Music, and the Urbano Project. She has held artist residencies at the Blue Sky Project and Acadia National Park, and has worked as a teaching artist with the Silk Road Project, the Urbano Project, and Young Audiences. www.shawpong.com

Arise for 18 string players

Site-specific composition exploring three-dimensional listening, and the relationship between nature, mental frenzy, and mental calm. Based on three years of birdsong research across four geographical locales, and interviews with musicians. Composed and choreographed by Shaw Pong Liu for the Calderwood Hall at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, MA. Commissioned and performed by A Far Cry, Boston-based conductorless chamber orchestra.

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Performance collaboration based on community interviews about the impact of the internet on people’s lives. Performance mixes improvised and composed music and dance with sculptural painting-installation and live painting and interactive Kinect sensor technology. Co-created with choregrapher Rodney Veal, painter Katherine Mann in collaboration with University of Dayton radar research institute UDRI and IDCAST. Performed by mixed ensemble of professional and amateur performers recruited from the community.

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Soldiers’ Tales Untold

Original musical-narrative performance mixing music of Stravinsky, improvised music, the stories of Vietnam combat veterans, and audience dialogue about PTSD and social impacts of war. Cast of four musicians and four actor-narrators. Performances in multiple community venues: churches, shelters, colleges, community centers.

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