Tired of the same old, same old? Try something rather different at the annual spring MATA Festival. A nonprofit organization founded in 1996 by Philip Glass, Eleonor Sandresky, and Lisa Bielawa, MATA showcases the work of composers and musicians under the age of forty. This year’s fest runs April 14-21 at the Kitchen and other venues, with free workshops and panel discussions (with advance RSVP) and concerts a mere twenty bucks. The lineup features thirty-four composers from seventeen countries, beginning with a sweet sixteen gala on April 14 at Paula Cooper Gallery with live performances by ICE and Matt Evans, a sound installation by Christopher Marianetti, and more. On April 16, Yotam Haber, Melissa Smey, Chris McIntyre, Amelia Lukas, and Mark Peskanov will discuss “On the Art of Curation” at BMI at 7 World Trade Center at 2:00, and the Kitchen will host “Between Noise and Silence,” with Helsinki music ensemble Uusinta playing works by Aaron Helgeson, Alexander Khubeev, Joan Arnau Pàmies, Hikari Kiyama, Ilari Kaila, and Sampo Haapamäki. On April 17 at 3:30, the workshop “The Business of Being a Composer Part 1” will bring together Cia Toscanini, Scott Winship, Paola Prestini, Steven Swartz, Richard Carrick, and Sarah Kirkland Snider at ASCAP at 1 Lincoln Plaza; at the Kitchen at 8:00, “That Which Remains” consists of Rubens Askenar García Hernández’s El Puerperio, André Damião Bandeira’s em_bruto, Natacha Diels’s A Is for Alphabet, a new work by Alex Weiser, and a new MATA commission by Carolyn Chen, performed by such musicians as pianist Vicky Chow, percussionist Matt Evans, and violinist Marina Kiff.
On April 18 at 11:00 am, Uusinta is back for an Afternoon Reading Session at BMI; that night, Talea Ensemble and Ekmeles team up on pieces by Šimon Vosecek, Edward Hamel, Clara Ianotta, Todd Tarantino, Martin Iddon, and Josep Sanz for the program “Lives in Miniature.” On April 19 at 8:00 at the Kitchen, Germany’s Neue Vocalsolisten and ICE will present the U.S. premiere of Oscar Bianchi’s Matra, with tubax, contrabass recorder, and bass flute, followed by a Q&A. On Easter Sunday at 1:00 at the Kitchen, the a cappella Neue Vocalsolisten will highlight works by American composers Georges Aperghis, Silvia Rosani, Brahim Kerkour, Zaid Jabri, Francesco Filidei, Gabriel Dharmoo, Lars Petter Hagen, and Jennifer Walshe. The festival concludes on April 21 with the workshop “The Business of Being a Composer Part 2” at BMI at 11:00 am with Ralph N. Jackson, Deirdre Chadwick, Bill Holab, Katie Baron, and Michael Geller; a pair of snare drummers will play David Bird’s Fields on the High Line between Nineteenth & Twentieth Sts. at 1:30 (free, no RSVP necessary); and MIVOS Quartet and Mantra Percussion combine for “Of Circles and Motions of the Others” at the Kitchen at 8:00, performing Lisa Streich’s Playtime, Daniel Wohl’s Progression, Yotam Haber’s Torus, Ansgar Beste’s Pelerinage Fantastique, Paula Matthusen’s The Days Are Nouns, and Ke Xu’s Tai Chi.