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Nief-Norf Performs Four Concerts At Big Ears 2017

Knoxville-based contemporary music ensemble, Nief-Norf, is presenting not one, but four concerts at this year's Big Ears Festival, including the opening concert at the official launch party.  Joined by special guest, percussionist Greg Stuart, the group will perform music by Michael Pisaro, Michael Gordeon, Pauline Oliveros, and Christopher Burns. Nief-Norf will "set the tone" of the festival by opening (at the launch party) with Oliveros' "Single Strike Roll Meditation," which requires the audience and performers to be fully present and in-the-moment. Nief-Norf artistic director, Andy Bliss, will present the world-premiere performance of Christopher Burns' composition for solo percussion, Constellations. The group will also present Michael Pisaro's work for 100 people, A Wave and Waves, at the Knoxville Museum of Art. And if you're looking for a way to become more involved in the Big Ears Festival, musicians are still needed to fill-out this performance; if interested in participating, email contact@niefnorf.org.  

In this interview, Melony Dodson talks with Andy Bliss about the music that Nief-Norf is performing, how he and the ensemble stay informed about new music, and about the positive impact that Big Ears has had on Nief-Norf and on the "music scene" in general. More information about Nief-Norf's performances can be found at www.bigearsfestival.com or at www.niefnorf.org   

Melony calls the beautiful mountains of Boone, N.C., home, although she was born near Greensboro, N.C. There’s just something about those Blue Ridge Mountains that got in her blood and never left after she moved there to attend Appalachian State University (ASU). While at ASU, she majored in piano performance and music therapy and began to cultivate a love for accompanying and for collaborating with other musicians. This soon led her to earn a master’s degree in collaborative piano at the University of Tennessee, which she attended from 2006-2008.