Cracking the Code

In Cracking the Code, new music superstars ACME and Third Coast Percussion present two major works by leading American composer David T. Little: companion pieces that explore the tension between the individual, secrecy, and state violence.

Haunt of Last Nightfall, a visceral “ghost play in two acts” for percussion quartet and electronics, examines America’s role in the 1981 massacre at El Mozote, El Salvador. AGENCY, for string quartet and electronics, questions individual autonomy, whether we are subject to unknown and powerful social and political forces. When paired together, The New York Times described the music as “forthright, visceral, bloody, with the intimacy and polish of a classical chamber ensemble but bulging with the loud, reverberant sweatiness of rock.”

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Newspeak performs David T Little's Sweet Light Crude

Newspeak is an eight member amplified ensemble originally organized by David T. Little in 2001 in Ann Arbor, then reformed in New York in 2004 with Clarinetist Eileen Mack. Named after the though-limiting language in George Orwell’s 1984, Newspeak explores the grey area where art and politics mix. Through their programming, performances, and commissions, Newspeak seeks to reconsider, redefine, and ultimately reclaim the notion of socially engaged music and its place in contemporary society. Embedding elements of a rock band into a classical new music ensemble, Newspeak confronts the boundaries between the classical and the rock traditions.

New Music Bake Sale

New Music Bake Sale was an annual event co-sponsored by Newspeak, designed to bring together the remarkably diverse New York new music community. It provided both a structure in which each participating group could increase knowledge about their activities, and an opportunity to raise funds through the sale of merchandise and goods, and through an silent auction, on-going throughout the evening. The New Music Bake Sale recognized that there is a lot more new music in the city than an individual could ever possibly take in. In this it brought the new music to the audience–and thus brought a new audience to the music–in the spirit of community-building and camaraderie. Little was a co-founder of the event, served as project manager from 2008-2010, and served as part of the organizing committee through 2015.