Good Friday: Etienne Nillesen solo / Marlies Debacker solo


A double concert by two outstanding improvisers living in Cologne: Percussionist Etienne Nillesen, whose unique and subtle snare drum language has received international acclaim, pushes the boundaries of the instrument's natural acoustics. And Marlies Debacker, pianist of new music and improvisational music, who makes the grand piano sound even more colorful and orchestral in her solo program "Shimmer" through differentiated key and pedal playing, extended playing techniques and "inside piano" playing.

Good Friday is one of the so-called "silent holidays" in Germany. On these days, "all events serving entertainment" are prohibited. According to current case law, these are performances "intended to convey pleasant pastimes, sociability, and rest and relaxation." However, events that deal with the themes of "mourning, commemoration of the dead and inner reflection" are permitted. With this in mind, we have invited the following musicians to prepare programs and provide music for this special evening.

Etienne Nillesen
... is a performer, improviser and percussionist living in Cologne. He works internationally as a soloist, in groups and in collaborative settings. Mostly using a single snare drum, he explores and pushes the boundaries of the instrument's natural acoustics, using both conventional playing techniques and extended techniques, especially engaging with materials through horizontal movement and friction to explore their properties.
With his interest in phenomena such as temporality, impermanence, and minimalism, he creates sonic spaces that convey sincerity, balance, rigor, and naturalness, and authentically combine imagination, intuition, and sensitivity. Etienne uses a minimal approach to the instrument with a maximum result of complexity in sound. These complex, detailed and usually subtle sounds require a high level of concentration from both the performer and the listener, making the act of listening as important as the production of the sounds.
He has gained international recognition for his unique snare drum language.
His interest in various forms of music and art has given him the opportunity to work regularly with artists:Inside such as Nate Wooley, Axel Dörner, Christian Wallumrød, Anne La Berge, Rudi Mahall, Carl Ludwig Hübsch, Jeb Bishop, Michael Vorfeld, Katherine Young, Sebastian Gramss, Pascal Niggenkemper, Tomeka Reid, Ingar Zach, Sofia Jernberg, Nick Dunston, Kaja Draksler, Sam Pluta, Weston Olencki, Madison Greenstone, Rie Watanabe, Valentin Garvie, Cao Thanh Lan, Sarah Saviet, Ensemble Modern, as well as collaborating with composers such as Elena Rykova, Viola Yip, Ruud Roelofsen and Zeynep Toraman.
He is currently a lecturer at ArtEZ University of the Arts, where he teaches improvisation and percussion.

Marlies Debacker
... is a Belgian pianist based in Cologne, Germany. Her music is dedicated to the relationship between free improvisation and contemporary music, and to exploring the sonic possibilities of the grand piano, seeking to use the instrument in a more colorful and orchestral way through differentiated key and pedal playing, extended playing techniques and "inside piano" playing.
Marlies has performed as a soloist, ensemble and improvising musician with renowned ensembles, her own bands and projects (such as Trio Abstrakt and Debacker/Hübsch/Javaid) at numerous festivals and has worked with numerous established composers. Furthermore, she is co-curator of the platform Nicht Dokumentierbarer Ereignisse and member of Impakt Köln. She studied classical piano, jazz, improvisation and new music in Antwerp, Cologne and Essen and has been lecturing at the HfMT Cologne since 2020.

"Shimmer, my debut solo album (Sirulita records), offers a glimpse into the music which has been evolving in my mind over the last few years. The recording brings together my engagement with different musical styles and approaches to improvisation to create music which explores the sonority of the piano, in particular the rich sound-world of its many spectra and resonances. Through improvisations and short concept pieces I was able to dive into the complexity of different acoustic phenomena or structures while simultaneously maintaining a playful and curious attitude towards the material thereby composing sound constellations in the moment.
Pseudo-electronic sounds, electrically amplified strings, harmonics and preparations form a genre-crossing sound palette with a great variety of expressive possibilities."

Fri, 07.04.2023
Concert Highlight!

Etienne Nillesen (snare drum), Marlies Debacker (piano)

Jazz, Improvisation

concert hall Start 18:00 Doors 17:00

18 €/12 € red. Presale Please note: vendors of presale-tickets may charge additional fees. 20 €/14 € red. Box Office nur Kartenzahlung

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