2017-03-08 Back to list

Band of the Day: The Maciunas Ensemble

Not trying to invite the band to the opening of Maciunas Square would be a terrible mistake.

Remember our blog post about George Maciunas that was published on his birthday? As the preparations for the grand opening of Maciunas Square – a tremendously FLUXUS’ish piece of art itself – have already started, we have decided to pitch in with a music proposal.

The idea of Maciunas square belongs to Naglis Rytis Baltušnikas who submitted it to the ‘Kaunas Accents’ contest and subsequently became one of the winners. The name sign of the square is already hanging in the FLUXUS cabinet of the Kaunas Picture Gallery, and the square itself is located right in front of a house in which Maciunas lived as a child. It’s actually a triangle bordered by traffic lanes; thus, putting up a post with the name sign is pretty much everything that has to be done.

a maciuno aikste3The George Maciunas Square proposal / Naglis Rytis Baltušnikas

Now, music. Meet The Maciunas Ensemble, a band from Eindhoven, Netherlands.

‘The Maciunas Ensemble was founded in 1968 by Dutch musicians and sound artists Paul Panhuysen, Remko Scha and Jan van Riet. It has existed ever since, though having gone through a number of membership changes until today’, reveal the sleeve notes of their album ‘1976’, recorded in 1976 and released in 2015.

ET31407LP CU‘The group's intention was to realize the piece ‘Music for Everyman’ by FLUXUS initiator George Maciunas which they interpreted as allowing boundless freedom in the sounds being produced. The group met at a regular basis, usually improvising on a number of instruments that were at hand. Every session was recorded. Before playing, they listened to the recording of the previous session and discussed it. No rehearsing or fine-tuning of pre-conceived material took place. To the view of Paul Panhuysen, their method of making music is closely linked with the oral tradition of folk music. This LP edition features two pieces, both recorded on December 19, 1976, and never released before on any format. Here, the group comprised Paul Panhuysen, Remko Scha, Jan van Riet, Leon van Noorden and Hans Schuurman’, continues the anonymous storyteller.

Here’s a track from ‘Music for Everyman’:

Is the band available for booking? Who knows! Interestingly enough, there’s a direct flight from Eindhoven to Kaunas operated by Wizzair, so not giving a try to invite them would be a terrible mistake.

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Maciunas would be proud.


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