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OUTER EAR: Distractfold

  • Experimental Sound Studio 5925 North Ravenswood Avenue Chicago, IL, 60660 United States (map)

Tickets: $10 general, $8 students & ESS members

Distractfold is an exciting ensemble that has established itself as a strong, fresh and daring voice in the UK music community. The group specialises in instrumental, acousmatic and hybrid music of the 21st century, written by composers of the new generation.


Steve Takasugi (US), Letters from prison,electroacoustic work
Mauricio Pauly (Costa Rica/UK), Sky Destroys Dog, for electric guitar
Ana Dall’ara Majek (France/Canada), Diaphonous Acarina, electroacoustic work
Sam Salem (UK), not one can pass away, for two objects operators, tape and video
Pierluigi Billone (Italy), Mani.Giacometti, for violin, viola and cello
Sabrina Schroeder (Canada), Stircrazer II, for solo bass clarinet + live mechanics
Esaias Järnegard (Sweden), NOEIN.noaidi, for solo viola**
Rebecca Saunders (UK/Germany), Vermillion, for electric guitar, bass clarinet and cello


Distractfold holds a quarterly residence at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation in Manchester, where they produce richly diverse programmes of new music from around the world. Through these concerts, Distractfold have been able to invite numerous composers to work with them, such as Steven Kazuo Takasugi, Hanna Hartman and Marek Poliks to name a few and have given UK and world premieres of works from composers such as Pierluigi Billone, Santiago Diez-Fischer and Michelle Lou. Distractfold and the IABF have also hosted guest performances from artists such as the Mivos Quartet, the Noise Upstairs, Wet Ink Ensemble and Lê Quan Ninh.

Alongside their work in Manchester, Distractfold perform regularly in festivals and concert series at home and abroad. Last season saw appearances at the 47th International Summer Course for New Music in Darmstadt, IGNM concert series at Gare du Nord, Basel; International Pozna? Spring New Music Festival; Le Bruit de la Musique festival, France; and Kammer Klang concert series at Café Oto, London. 

2014 was also the year where they became the first ever UK ensemble to be awarded the Kranichstein Prize for Interpretation.

Passionate about developing new ideas and creative potential among young composers, Distractfold has participated in reading sessions and workshops nationally and abroad. Some of these collaborative projects include workshops at Huddersfield University, Brunel University, Royal Northern College of Music and Ithaca College. In 2015 Distractfold has been invited as one of the resident ensembles for the Harvard Group for New Music.