Named “The Best Classical Music Ensemble of 2018” by The New York Times, the Wet Ink Ensemble is a collective of composers, performers and improvisers dedicated to adventurous musicmaking. Wet Ink is proud to celebrate 20 years of adventurous music-making in NYC and around the world with the 2018-19 concert season. The 20th Anniversary Season highlights the ethos of innovation through collaboration that has guided the work of Wet Ink throughout the ensemble’s history, celebrating the music and the unique performance practice developed in the “band” atmosphere of Wet Ink’s core septet of composer-performers, and presenting exciting new projects with emerging and underrepresented artists and longtime collaborators.
Since the group’s first concerts in 1998, Wet Ink has moved fluently along a continuum of composition, improvisation, and interpretation, from early collaborations with Christian Wolff, George Lewis, and ZS to pioneering portrait concerts of Peter Ablinger, Mathias Spahlinger, Anthony Braxton, and the AACM composers, and deep, long-term collaborative work by members of Wet Ink.
In that same spirit, Season 20 showcases the many facets of the group’s work - highlights include a retrospective look at “classics” of Wet Ink’s repertoire and new projects by Sky Macklay, Rick Burkhardt, and Wet Ink’s four acclaimed composer-members (Alex Mincek, Sam Pluta, Kate Soper, and Eric Wubbels); the release of Wet Ink: 20 on Carrier Records, the debut album featuring the 28 musicians of the Wet Ink Large Ensemble; the release of Josh Modney’s "Engage" on New Focus Recordings, “one of the most intriguing programs of the year” (The New York Times) and the release of Kate Soper’s "IPSA DIXIT" on New World Records (and performance on Miller Theatre at Columbia University’s Composer Portrait: Kate Soper); the premiere of Eric Wubbels's 45-minute piano trio "if and only if", and new collaborations with renowned creative musicians Darius Jones, Peter Evans (Being & Becoming), Charmaine Lee, Cory Smythe, and many others.
Wet Ink is co-directed by a core septet of world class composers, improvisers, and interpreters that collaborate in band-like fashion, writing, improvising, preparing, and touring pieces together over long stretches of time. These directors are Erin Lesser (flutes), Alex Mincek (saxophone), Ian Antonio (percussion), Eric Wubbels (piano), Josh Modney (violin), Kate Soper (voice), and Sam Pluta (electronics). The Wet Ink Large Ensemble is a group of extraordinary New York City musicians that come together to play the world's most exciting and innovative music.