Spring time is nearly upon us. As are several cons, which is always a cause for joy. A con is like a festival, but better because there's also stuff during the day. Music festivals are nifty, but they're usually only in the evenings. I'm thinking it would be fun to do a small tour of the continent in May.
May 2 - 4 is Transgender Europe in Berlin. I used the feedback form to ask if they were interested in booking some music. I think they have an obligation to present work by ftm composer/performers of 'art' music. As I type this, I'm drining water out of a cup with cartoon of Tigger on it. I want to find out if, like Tigger, I'm the only one. Anyway, they haven't written back yet, which is frustrating, since I'd like to try to get other gigs around Germany if they take me. And now is the time to be trying to get booked.
May 6 - 8 is the fêtes de Jeanne d'Arc in Orléans, France (an hour or so away from Paris by train). I'm several centuries too modern to play at this event, but I've been going to it every yar since I moved to Europe and I'd like to go again. And do some biking around the Loire. Last year, I decided not to go to Cherveney, despite it being the origin of my lap tuba - and some fine wine. I don't know how cool it would be to do a bike tour like that by myself. I think I'm looking for people to go along with me, if I go. Joan of Arc, of course, got burned at the stake rather than dress like a girl, so she's close to my heart.
May 25 - 31 is /ETC in Amsterdam, a feminist con that I played at last year. They're women-only, which, obviously, makes me nervous, since I'd rather be burned at the stake than dress like a girl. I had a lot of angst about this last year also and contacted them about whether or not they discriminated against trans people. They do not. This year, the group hosting it is called "gender changers" and they've had FTM participation in the past. They seem supportive, and last year was super-awesome, so I hope this works out. I'm thinking of doing a duet with somebody, if they'll take me, to sort of up the female quotient of my act. ha. I'm going to the con whether I play or not, I think, since last year was so great and I really miss Holland. I want to take Xena, but I think I can still find lodging with a buddy in Den Haag and commute in to Amsterdam on the train. I can imagine that I can find lodging for Xena easier than for myself. She's popular.
I have a friend in Bremmen, Germany, so I'll email him a CD shortly. There's a strong noise scene there. And, if I'm going to be in France, I'd like to play in Paris again. Of course, that's much, much, much easier said than done. I'm going to see what contacts I can get there through school here and California, since my contacts form living there aren't great for gig-getting. And, obviously, I'll see if I can play more than once in the Netherlands. Berlin to Paris to Bremen to Amsterdam is perhaps overly circuitious. I will be travelling by ferry, bike and train,
to keep my carbon footprint down as that's easier for Xena, so the best timing for Bremmen might be late April.
I'm working on a piece about gender issues and sexuality that I'd like to premier in Berlin, if they take me. It's the drag king piece, which features a crotch-mounted joy stick and moaning sounds. I'm going to add in some videogame samples (specifically, I want World of Warcraft). I also want to use samples of people talking, of course. Because all my political pieces use speaking. Because I'm unsubtle, alas. I think I want to interview people and ask them the questions that I got asked on transgender clinic intake. "What's your first memory of having a gender?" "How long have you known that you are a man/woman?" "What makes somebody a man?" "What makes somebody a woman?" I think these questions are actually quite stupid. Especially the last two. But the answers are potentially very interesting. I kind of think of it as performative queer theory as much as music.
So if you want to record yourself talking about how you became aware of your own gender and what that means to you, email it to me! Otherwise, I'll be pushing microphones into other students' faces. I just came out to them last week, so it should be delightfully awkward and stressful to do this.
Also, if you can get me a gig in France, Germany, BeNeLux or nearby, please drop me a line! I'll have everything I need to to do electronic noise, live processing, and/or laptop pieces. And a dog! And my bike touring gear. Heh. This is managable, but insane, so perfect. If I can't get any other gigs, maybe I'll bike from Berlin to Amsterdam. I wonder if there's some way to organize a bike/music tour, like, to promote environmental causes . . .
In other news
For those of you in the San Francisco area, Other Minds 13 is very nearly upon you! I am jealous of you, because I wish I could go. The sampler CD for the shows is awesome. There's a lot of great music. It's March 6 - 8 in SF. There's a sudent discounts avilable. I think it's possible to get in free by volunteering. This year is especially great for fans of the cello. Fracnis-Marie Uitti will be plaing. She's a friend of Ellen. Her music is incredible. She's playing on the 6th. If you can only go to one night, go to that one. And then leave me taunting messages about how it was sper awesome and I'll be sad. I was going to come home for the festival, but the way my student visa ended up working out, I just couldn't. Alas.