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2000 Tour: Ensemble Members

Nancy Beckman
Tom Bickley
fran carris
Bobby Corbell
Jonathan Matis
John R. Snyder
Rod Stryker
Tim Wood
Thom the World Poet
Joseph Zitt

Thomas F. Bickley

Thomas F. Bickley, born in Houston, Texas holds degrees in music, liturgical studies and information science. His studies included African American sacred music with J. Jefferson Cleveland, recorder with Scott Reiss, Gregorian Chant with Ruth Steiner and Deep Listening and composition with Pauline Oliveros. He is based in Houston, Texas and Washington, DC, where he is on the music faculty of the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop, teaching private lessons and classes in early and new music.

Active as a composer and performer of sacred music, he assists with the multicultural liturgical music at St. Stephen and the Incarnation Episcopal Church, in Washington, DC. His work Christe Redemptor Omnium was commissioned and performed by organist Ronald Stolk at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC in August, 1993. His setting of the Magnificat for cantor, congregation and tape has been sung in numerous services in Houston and Washington. He assisted in the production of the CD Praise the Lord: Gospel music in Washington, DC (Smithsonian/Folkways 40113) for the Anacostia Museum & Center for African American History & Culture. He has provided music for walking meditation at the labyrinth at the Church of the Epiphany in DC, creating the works Lunations I-IV as part of that project.

In addition to Comma, Bickley performs in Gusty Winds May Exist (with shakuhachi player Nancy Beckman), Gray Code, a new music quartet/quintet based in DC and Chicago, as well as with Pauline Oliveros at MECA in Houston. Tom Bickley has performed with a variety of ensembles in concert, theatrical and workshop settings. Concert performances, in addition to work with Comma and Gusty Winds May Exist, include the SonicWorks New Music Festival in Houston, Ione's Dream Festival in Kingston, NY, unCAGEd II & III in Baltimore.

Learn more about Bickley at www.artswire.org/tbickley and www.metatronpress.com/artists/tbickley/ or reach him by email at tbickley@artswire.org.

Joseph Zitt

Joseph Zitt's texts and music have been performed across the country. His book Shekhinah: The Presence was published by Metatron Press. He has created multimedia works with the Human Systems Performance Group and sound poetry performances with Question Authority, the. He is a member of the new music vocal ensemble Comma, and can be heard on their CD (voices). He founded and manages Silence: the Internet John Cage Mailing List, and develops technologies for human empowerment near Washington, DC.

You can learn more about Joseph Zitt at metatronpress.com/artists/zitt and you reach him by email at jzitt@metatronpress.com. Additional Photos are available at www.metatronpress.com/jzitt/pix/.

Nancy Beckman

Nancy Beckman is a shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute) player and teacher who learned the traditional solo Zen Buddhist meditational repertoire in Japan. She plays in churches, bathtubs, cornfields, hospitals, waterfalls, graveyards, and onstage. She studied ethnomusicology at Wesleyan University, Inter-Arts at San Francisco State University, and collaborated in site-specific performance art pieces using Japanese language and photography. Currently, she studies Deep Listening with Pauline Oliveros and engages in guerilla deep listening as social action. Based in San Francisco, she performs experimental music with recorder player Thomas Bickley in the duo Gusty Winds May Exist, improvises with the Sisters of the Sound Continuum, and composes improvisational sound meditations. Her saving grace may be an irrational rapprochement with reality. For updates on garage doors opening in San Francisco, contact her at nancy_bee@hotmail.com or see www.metatronpress.com/artists/gwme.

John Snyder

Austin-based musician and poet John Snyder was a member of the sound/poetry/improv group Empty Words and has appeared in numerous live and recorded performances across the country with long-time collaborator Tom Bickley. His poetry has been featured at the Austin International Poetry Festival and appears in the e-zine Webgeist. He holds degrees in music theory, computer science and philosophy. He studied composition with Robert Nelson, viola with Wayne Crouse and Steve Ansell, computer sound synthesis with Barry Vercoe, and Javanese gamelan with Jarrad Powell and Endo Suanda. He teaches 9-12 year olds at Austin Montessori School.

John Snyder can be reached by email at jsnyder@pobox.com

Jonathan Matis

Jonathan Matis studied composition at Connecticut College with Noel Zahler, and at the Hartt School of Music, studying with Steven Gryc, Robert Carl, and David Macbride. He received the Mahan Prize in Music from Connecticut College in 1993, and the Diemente Prize from the Hartt School in 1999.

Jonathan plays the electric guitar primarily, and has performed in many different types of ensembles, in a wide variety of venues. He has performed live on radio, television, and in festivals. He played in the prog-core band Snuggles and the ambient free improv ensemble Tiktok, both in Austin, Texas and with Casual Saturn, a Connecticut-based collective of improvising musicians. Matis currently lives in the Washington, DC area, and performs with many other Metatron Press artists.

For additional recordings and info, please see Jonathan's page at mp3.com: www.mp3.com/matis. For upcoming concerts and events, see Jonathan's mp3.com "artist calendar". He can be reached by email at matis@freedomhouse.org.

fran carris

fran carris is a visual/video/performance artist. Recent poetry/multi-media credits include "Running With Wolves" at Barnes & Noble and a minitour of Texas cities with the sound/poetry ensemble "Comma". Poetry video credits include "Manifesto" and "Ignition". Other video credits include "Lady in the Dark" shown at the Dallas Video Festival and the San Antonio Museum of Art. Recent performance credits include "Two to Tango" at the Eagle Dallas and "Miss Goddess Goes To Tea" for Fieldwork at the Bathhouse Cultural Center. She is a member of C. J. Critt's "Angry Girl Sextet" who have performed in multiple venues including the "Femmathon" in New York City at the Pulse Ensemble Theater. When she grows up she wants to retire from the telephone company.

fran can be reached by email at ravenous@swbell.net.

Thom The World Poet

THOMTHEWHIRLEDPOE is a biodegradable yet volatile mix of possibilities,probability theories and lateral thinking.He used to live in the moment,but shifted when the Doppler Effect entered politics.He lives in a caravan in a distant star system,practising making mantras for a departing moon.He chews slowly,digesting poetry 33 times before ingesting.He was last seen as a human jukebox,and heard as an optical soundtrack for a movie that will never be released.His first words were.

Trust this will awaken the sleeping!

Thom the World Poet can be reached by email at worldpoet@rocketmail.com

Tim Wood

Tim Wood's work is usually described simply by calling on names of some of the more surrealistic and bizarre figures in the twentieth century. One critic raised the name of Dali. Christopher Soden, Director of the Dallas Poets Community, introduced Tim's poetry at the 1995 Autumn Equinox Poetry Gala as "a fusion between Laurie Anderson and George Orwell." He later amended his comments in a review of Mr. Wood's book Voices: "After reading Voices: painting with words, I stand by that diagnosis, with perhaps a bit of Rod Serling thrown into the mix." His work ranges from poetry to visual art to video and has been featured in New York, Chicago, New Mexico and across Texas. Upcoming performances include several venues in San Francisco. He has three collections of poetry to his credit. Tim Wood is also Publisher of artsDFW. You can learn more about Tim Wood and his work on his website 4til7.com or email him at onlyone@4til7.com.

Rod Stryker

Rod Stryker writes poetry because he desperately wants to please "she-who-is-my-mistress," the muse. What her reasons are, he can't even begin to guess. As Rod puts it, "I just do what I'm told." He is the founder of the Sun Poet's Society and Editor and Publisher of the literary and artistic quarterly Sun Poetic Times. He has performed at schools and prisons, on radio Stations and at various events throughout Texas. He recently completed a tour of England with features that included the Bristol International Poetry Festival, the Southampton International Poetry Festival, BBC 1 Radio and Bath Spa University. Rod Stryker was born January 19, 1967 under the given name Carlos Emilio Rodriguez. He has two boys, served 7 years in the U.S. Air Force and works at Baptist Medical Center in San Antonio.

Rod receives email from the muse and the occasional mere mortal at sunpoets@hotmail.com.

Bobby Corbell

Bobby Corbell was born and raised in a teensy-weensy West Texas town, where he learned to really love music.. Trombone in the high school band, piano lessons on the side. He moved to the Austin area in 1989 and have since been expanding my list of likes. Upon meeting Joe Zitt in 1994 or so, his exposure to various "underground" and/or previously-unbelieved music (and more!) has increased his hunger for New and Unusual. He's performed with Joe Zitt and various combinations of his groupings a few times, and enjoys it immensely!

Bobby Corbell has an outpost on the web at www.mezaway.org.