‘..a fine musician […] vibrant colours with plenty of virtuosity [..]An unexpected and arresting experience.’- Michael Church, Review, the Independent
‘I believe that Abraham’s potential to become a world leader in his field is clear [...] he has a powerful talent for engaging the public’-Marina Abramovic
“Abraham is really an astonishing musician – a highly talented multi-instrumentalist with a lovely voice and a deep curiosity about the world. It’s a real pleasure to present him.” Josephine Burton, Dash Arts
Abraham Brody creates unique multidimensional experiences for his audiences. Bringing together music, performance art, and multimedia, he pushes the boundaries between performer and public and challenges the traditional notions of a performer in the 21st century by uniting these three art forms into one cohesive whole. For him, performance is a vehicle to transform himself and his audiences.
Drawing inspiration from the roots, rituals, and folklore of diverse backgrounds, he weaves them into performances combining his own compositions, improvisation, and multimedia works.
He has collaborated with renowned performance artist Marina Abramovic, has travelled to far-eastern Siberia in search of shamans, and also creates the bulk of his solo works based on the folklore and music of his Lithuanian roots.
He has performed and shown his works in such places as the Barbican Centre London (month-long residency in 2015), The Public Theater New York, Tate Modern, Southbank Centre London, Pace Gallery, Fondation Beyeler Basel, Sziget Festival Budapest, Solyanka VPA Moscow, Vortex Jazz Club London, and Rich Mix London, among others.
‘He has a special power as a performer in that he has united both his skills as a classically-trained musician with the genre of performance art, creating a distinct way of performing that is entirely his own’- Jane Alison, Head of Visual Arts, Barbican Centre London
Photos by Oleg Skrinda, Brian McWilliams, Solveiga Serova
Abraham Brody + Trys Keturiose
October 14, Pletai present new work at HappyLuckyNo1 Gallery, Brooklyn
October 5, Pletai at National Sawdust, New York
September 24 'The Violinist is Present' at HappyLuckyNo1 Gallery, Brooklyn
September 23 National Sawdust Season Opening Concert, New York
September 2017-July 2018 Artist-in-Residence, National Sawdust, New York
September 4-10 Project for SOU Festival with Georgian polyphonic singers 'Adilei,' Tbilisi, Georgia
August 26-3 September, Research in Ukraine
September 2017-July 2018 Artist-in-Residence, National Sawdust, New York
August 10, 2017 LiteraturHaus Copenhagen
August 5, 2017 Vasaros Terasa, Vilnius
July 19, 2017 Lunga Arts Festival, Seydisfjordur, Iceland
June 30, 2017 Meyerhold Center Theater with Pletai
June 5, 2017 Rooms Hotel Tbilisi, Georgia
June 3, 2017 Rooms Hotel Kazbegi, Georgia
May 29-June 10, 2017 Research trip to Georgia and Caucasus Mountains
April 29, 2017 'Singing with Nightingales', Lewes, Sussex, England
April 25, 2017 Rich Mix London, collaboration with Mariana Sadovska
April 1-15, 2017 Research in Lithuania (Dzukija region folk songs)
March 4, 2017 'From the Rich Dark Earth', Saint Catherine's Church, Vilnius, Lithuania
February 10-25, 2017 Residency at Solyanka VPA Moscow, Russia, with PLETAI
February 7, 2017 Vortex Jazz Club London
December 12, 2016, Vortex Jazz Club with Iva Bittova
October 20-November 20, 2016 Residency and exhibition of 'ONGON: Journey to Buryatia' at Fabrika CCI Moscow, Russia
Notable Past Performances/Works:
July 2016, 3-week research trip and filming in Buryatia, Siberia to study shamanic rituals and sacred music of Buryats
Artist-in-Residence, Barbican Centre London, July 2015
'The Violinist is Present' with Marina Abramovic, Fondation Beyeler, September 2014
Joe's Pub at the Public Theater with Iva Bittova, July 2016
Pace Gallery 'Ancestors: Memory' Performance and Installation in collaboration with Michal Rovner, June 2015
As part of his practise, Abraham Brody creates Performance and Multimedia works. The main area of his artistic research are rituals and their ability to raise our consciousness and awareness, thus bringing us into deeper contact with ourselves. Through the research and collaboration with ancient cultures, he creates contemporary works which aim to take us out of our daily 'autopilot' and into a higher awareness and meaning.
CARPATHIAN LEMKO LEGENDS (2017)
With Mariana Sadovska (Ukraine)
After their first collaboration at Rich Mix London in April 2017, Mariana and Abraham embark in summer 2017 on an exciting research project in the Carpathian mountains of Ukraine, Slovakia, and eastern Poland, collecting songs and legends from remote villages. This project explores the shared cultural heritage between Mariana and Abraham, both having roots with the Lemko people, an ethnic minority native to the Carpathian mountains, who preserve their own very ancient culture and traditions. The Lemko were never truly christianised, though religious, many of their customs and folk songs are influenced by strong pagan beliefs, and it is this influence which gives them such a magical quality. Mariana and Abraham create their own re-inventions of these songs using voice, violin, harmonium, electronics, and other instruments.
Born from an all-night jam session in Moscow, Pletai reinvents slavic + baltic folk through the interconnection of improvisation, performance art, and multimedia
Brody & Bittova
Together Abraham Brody and Iva Bittova explore uncharted waters through improvisation using violins, voices, and electronics, pushing the boundaries of the theatrical and the mystical side of performance.
ONGON: Journey to Buryatia (2016)
In collaboration with Konstantin Guz
Long-durational 6 hour Performance and Video Installation
Premiered at Fabrika CCI Moscow, October 2016
In summer 2016 Abraham Brody and Konstantin Guz travelled to the Republic of Buryatia, Siberia, to research the rituals of Buryat shamans and the place of music and performance in the 'trance-state' of the shamans.
Videos taken from the artists travels in Buryatia, explore Brody’s introspective journey to take inspiration from the sacred rituals and places of Buryatia.
Brody , along with several assistants, will guide visitors through spaces and experiences which bring them into a deeper level of reflection and push the boundaries of self-awareness.
Powerful soundscapes using voice, violin, and drumming, allowing the visitor to enter a sound world that deepens their experience of the whole installation. Visitors are invited to remain in the space as long as possible.
The Buryat people of Southeastern Siberia have some of the most ancient traditions in the world. Shamans use the power of drums and songs to travel to other worlds and communicate with spirits.
Ongon, are the souls of one’s ancestors and spirits which inhabit sacred places in nature, such as mountains, trees, rivers, lakes. By speaking with the Ongon and, sometimes letting them take over their bodies, shamans heal people, resolve problems and seek blessings. The shamans drum and sing to call forth spirits and make offers of food, alcohol, and animal sacrifice.
Video Installation (password Ongon)
Premiered Barbican Centre Art Gallery, July 2015
with Trys Keturiose, sutartine performers
4 & 6-hour long durational performance
In our modern society, many of us have lost our roots. Knocked off balance by the speed and immediacy of modern technology, we have lost touch with many of the traditions which both ground us and orientate us to the rhythms of life. In this long-durational performance, Abraham Brody draws from both folk music and pagan rituals of Baltic Culture, exploring the connection to his roots through ritual, gesture, and music. In Ancestors Part I Brody seeks to use long-durational performance to achieve a transformation of body and spirit over the four hours, reconnecting him with his ancestral DNA. Throughout the performance Brody will alternate between rituals stemming from Lithuanian paganism to performing his own music based on Lithuanian folksongs. In Ancestors Part II he will be joined by renowned Lithuanian folksinging ensemble Trys Keturiose who perform unique polyphonic 'sutartinės' (ancient ritual songs) alongside Abraham Brody. Through these ritual songs, the women call to the sun, bless the fields before harvest, and make offerings to the river.
For some of these rituals, the public will be invited to participate. The public is encouraged to remain in the space for as long as possible, so that they are able to fully experience the power of this transformation through ritual and music.
1 or 5-screen video installation and live performance
In collaboration with Mykolas Budraitis
This work seeks to explore the relationship of tradition, preservation, roots, and ritual to modern society.
‘Nourish’ hints at the clash of the transition to modern society in which we begin to lose our traditions, roots, cultural and ancestral grounding points. In the video installation, Abraham Brody reconnects to the tradition of his ancestors by performing the process of baking Lithuanian rye-bread. He prepares the baking of the bread and the baking itself through his own rituals and connection with the earth. Abraham Brody has created these rituals as an outsider longing for culture of his ancestors, lost through migration and displacement. The imagery in the film references many forgotten traditions and memories of tools used in the harvest and bread making process. (video available upon request)
THE VIOLINIST IS PRESENT
With Marina Abramovic
Premiered Fondation Beyeler, Basel, Switzerland at 'The Artist is an Explorer, curated by Marina Abramovic
This performance is an exploration of the powerful energy between performer and public, The main goal being to give the public an active role in the performance. Abraham Brody invites members of the public to sit in front of him, one at a time, and he will create musical improvisations based on what he sees in their eyes. When sitting in front of the violinist, the public is encouraged to keep eye contact with him at all times.
This performance brings both the public and Performer fully into the present moment, allowing the public to become aware of their current inner emotions. The creation of this work goes two ways, The violinist improvising in response to what he sees in the public's eyes, the public affected and changed by the music, creating an ever evolving process and a spontaneous musical piece unique to each moment.
The energy transmitted from the public sustains the violinist in his musical creations. The longer the public remains in the space, and the more focused attention they bring to the present moment, the more they actively control the dialogue between the violinist and themselves.
News & Updates
April 23, 2017
Abraham brody named artist-in-residence 2017-18 at national sawdust, nyc
More details soon TBA
April 26, 2017
New Album release may 2017 'From the Rich dark Earth'
Abraham Brody releases his first solo album, a compilation of his compositions based on Lithuanian folklore
Abraham featured in songlines magazine, april issue 2017
Interview with editor Simon Broughton
April 17, 2017
NEw ep released with pletai