Bang on a Can

"the kind of intense collaborative ensemble that comes from deeply shared understanding and commitment ..." - The ​Washington Post

"[Bang on a Can has] a central role in fostering a new kind of audience that doesn’t concern itself with boundaries. If music is made with originality and integrity, these listeners will come." - The New York Times 


"the country’s most important vehicle for contemporary music" - The San Francisco Chronicle


"There are other places to hear contemporary music, but it is seldom offered with such a potent blend of intensity, authority, and abandon." - Vanity Fair​


"Bang on a Can play with a refreshingly romantic involvement bringing a sense of surge and sweep to modern sounds that is far removed from the coolness and remoteness sometimes attributed to modernism." - The Sydney Morning Herald


Bang on a Can is dedicated to making music new. Since its first Marathon concert in 1987, Bang on a Can has been creating an international community dedicated to innovative music, wherever it is found. With adventurous programs, it commissions new composers, performs, presents, and records new work, develops new audiences, and educates the musicians of the future. Bang on a Can is building a world in which powerful new musical ideas flow freely across all genres and borders. Bang on a Can plays “a central role in fostering a new kind of audience that doesn’t concern itself with boundaries. If music is made with originality and integrity, these listeners will come.” (The New York Times)


Bang on a Can has grown from a one-day New York-based Marathon concert (on Mother’s Day in 1987 in a SoHo art gallery) to a multi-faceted performing arts organization with a broad range of year-round international activities. “When we started Bang on a Can, we never imagined that our 12-hour marathon festival of mostly unknown music would morph into a giant international organization dedicated to the support of experimental music, wherever we would find it,” write Bang on a Can Co-Founders Michael Gordon, David Lang and Julia Wolfe. “But it has, and we are so gratified to be still hard at work, all these years later. The reason is really clear to us – we started this organization because we believed that making new music is a utopian act – that people needed to hear this music and they needed to hear it presented in the most persuasive way, with the best players, with the best programs, for the best listeners, in the best context. Our commitment to changing the environment for this music has kept us busy and growing, and we are not done yet.”


Current projects include LOUD WeekendThe People's Commissioning Fund, a membership program to commission emerging composers; the Bang on a Can All-Stars, who tour to major festivals and concert venues around the world every year; recording projects; the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA - a professional development program for young composers and performers led by today’s pioneers of experimental music; Asphalt Orchestra, Bang on a Can’s extreme street band that offers mobile performances re-contextualizing unusual music; Found Sound Nation, a new technology-based musical outreach program now partnering with the State Department of the United States of America to create OneBeat, a revolutionary, post-political residency program that uses music to bridge the gulf between young American musicians and young musicians from developing countries; cross-disciplinary collaborations and projects with DJs, visual artists, choreographers, filmmakers and more.  Each new program has evolved to answer specific challenges faced by today’s musicians, composers and audiences, in order to make innovative music widely accessible and wildly received.Bang on a Can’s inventive and aggressive approach to programming and presentation has created a large and vibrant international audience made up of people of all ages who are rediscovering the value of contemporary music.




Photo by Peter Serling


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Press Contact:

Christina Jensen


Press Releases

March 27: Meredith Monk and Bang on a Can All-Stars in New Cantaloupe Music Album MEMORY GAME >

February 27: Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum present flutist Nicole Mitchell >

January 28: Bang on a Can All-Stars premiere works by Alvin Curran, Amanda Berlind, Hildur Guðnadóttir, and Qasim Naqvi on People's Commissioning Fund (PCF) Concert

Bang on a Can Launches New 3-Day Music Festival - LONG PLAY - May 1-3, 2020 in Brooklyn >

November 14: Theo Bleckmann performs "Hello Earth! – The Music of Kate Bush" presented by Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum >

October 5: Bang on a Can presents Asphalt Orchestra & Orchestra of Original Instruments at Downtown Brooklyn Arts Festival >

September 6: Bang on a Can presents Balún at The Noguchi Museum >

September 4: OneBeat Announces Tour Concerts in Atlanta, Knoxville, Orlando, Gainesville - 25 Musicians from 17 Countries Produced by Bang on a Can’s Found Sound Nation >

August 11: Bang on a Can presents Laraaji at The Noguchi Museum >


August 2-4: Daily Schedule Announced for Bang on a Can's new festival LOUD Weekend at MASS MoCA >


August 2-4: Bang on a Can and MASS MoCA Launch LOUD Weekend - a New Music Festival >

July 14: Bang on a Can Presents 75 Dollar Bill at The Noguchi Museum >

July 11: Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum present Young People’s Chorus of New York City >

May 23: Bang on a Can and the Jewish Museum present Meredith Monk and Vocal Ensemble >

May 20: Bang on a Can Announces Summer Programming - inaugural LOUD Weekend, plus concerts at The Noguchi Museum and the Jewish Museum >

May 10: Cantaloupe Music and innova Recordings release Jeffrey Brooks' The Passion featuring Bang on a Can All-Stars and Contemporaneous >

April 15: Julia Wolfe’s Pulitzer Prize-Winning Work Anthracite Fields performed at SOLUNA festival in Dallas >

April 12: Bang on a Can All-Stars make debut in Denver with Big Space concert - University of Denver >

March 6: Bang on a Can presents 2019 People’s Commissioning Fund Concert as part of the Ecstatic Music Festival >

February 28: Bang on a Can and The Jewish Museum present Julia Wolfe's string quartets performed by ETHEL >

January 15, 18, & 19: Bang on a Can All-Stars perform at Brighton Dome and Kings Place >


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