Improvisation

One of my passions is improvisation, and particularly improvising on the flute. Improvisation is such a crucial part of human expression, allowing for a full range of emotions. As a performer, I've been improvising for most of my career. However, as a composer, I've often notated material precisely for others to read and interpret. Experience has taught me that music notation has its place, but it certainly can also cause issues. Ultimately, music notation can add barriers that may prevent true interpretations and intentions of the music (and the musicians) to be expressed. Early in my career—especially during my graduate studies—I notated many works very literally and precisely. Since that time, I've been fortunate to work with a number of amazing musicians who fully embrace improvisation within their practice. These experiences have led me to embrace improvisation more and more within my compositions and performances. As a performer (and as a composer) it is liberating to play and to create without notated music and simply let the mind be in the moment… without restrictions.

On this page I've included a number of improvisations and collaborations. The first two videos include a series of flute improvisations recorded at home while we've been on lock-down due to the virus. After this is a playlist with the Adams Charke Exchange, a new duo collaboration with Norman Adams. Then a video of Ade Suparman's composition, Marudah with Ade Suparman on kacapi, Ken Shorley on frame drum, and myself on bass flute. Then there's an improvised work I 'wrote' called Shadow Leaves Shimmer. And finally, a collaborative performance recorded at CBC Halifax with composer Daniel MacNeil on guitar and oud, Taral Naik on tabla, Samidha Naik on voice, Donald MacLennan on violin, Norman Adams on cello, and myself on flute.

I hope you enjoy!