Musarc is one of the UK's most progressive choral ensembles. Based at The Cass Art, Architecture and Design, London Metropolitan University, the choir explores performance and composition in relation to the creative process and investigates listening in the context of society, architecture and the city. The ensemble regularly collaborates with composers to develop work that challenges traditional ways of making music, and brings together art, performance and education.
Musarc has performed at Cafe OTO, Bold Tendencies, Turner Contemporary, V22 and the Royal Maritime Museum. In 2012, it presented Bang! Being the Building at the Barbican’s OMA/Progess show, and its voices could be heard in Ed Atkin’s Us Dead Talk Love at the Chisenhale Gallery. In 2013, Musarc presented again again with Melanie Pappenheim at Milton Keynes Gallery in response to an exhibition of Peter Dreher’s work. The ensemble returned to MK Gallery for their show How to construct a time machine where it performed a choral version of Terry Riley’s In C and a new work by Neil Luck. Musarc’s voices could be heard at the New Museum, New York, in Laure Prouvost's How to make money religiously (2014). In July 2014 Ed Atkins invited the ensemble back to perform at Synonyms: Five or six noise-making rifts, a Park night at the Serpentine Gallery on the occasion of his exhibition. In 2015, Musarc took part in a performance of Peter Liversidge’s Notes on protesting, and performed Sam Belinfante’s Corpus Sonus for voices and dictaphones, both at the Whitechapel Gallery. In 2016, Musarc performed at Wysing Poliphonic and at the Museum of London.
The choir has collaborated with experimental music label Entr’acte, with whom it currently producing an album of Musarc’s commissions from Neil Luck in Antwerp, October 2015. Musarc has worked many artists and composers including Anton Lukoszevieze, Sarah Kate Wilson, Ben Hadley, Benedict Drew, Esther Venrooy, Neil Luck, Marc Behrens, and Sam Belinfante. Musarc was one of four contemporary ensembles on Sound and Music’s ‘Portfolio’ scheme in 2014, and Adopt a Composer residency in 2011.
Musarc also runs Field Studies, an annual field-recording, performance and musique concrète workshop. Field Studies tutors included Akio Suzuki and Aki Onda, Michael Klïen, David Toop, Helen Frosi, Melanie Pappenheim, Claudia Molitor, Esther Venrooy, and Marc Behrens. Musarc was founded in 2008 by Joseph Kohlmaier, who is its creative director, and is conducted by Cathy Heller Jones. Read more about people and how to join the choir.