Audrey Chen

Audrey Chen © Michael Breyer

Audrey Chen

Audrey Chen is a second-generation Chinese/Taiwanese-American musician who was born into a family of material scientists, doctors and engineers, outside of Chicago in 1976. Parting ways with the family convention, she turned to the cello at age 8 and voice at 11. After years of classical and conservatory training in both instruments, with a resulting specialization in early and new music, she parted ways again in 2003 to begin new negotiations with sound in order to discover a more individually honest aesthetic.

Since then, using the voice, cello and analog electronics, Chen’s work delves deeply into her own version of narrative and non-linear storytelling. A large component of her music is improvised, is completely un-processed and her approach to this is extremely personal and visceral. Her playing explores the combination and layering of an analog synthesizer, preparations and traditional and extended techniques in both the voice and cello. She works to join these elements into a singular ecstatic personal language.

Aside from her solo concerts, Chen performs currently in her longest running duo project since 2005 with Phil Minton; as BEAM SPLITTER with trombonist Henrik Munkeby Nørstebø; as MOPCUT with Lukas Koenig and Julien Desprez; in duo with electronic music artist Kaffe Matthews and as a duo for voice/live digital process with Mexican sound artist Hugo Esquinca. Her more recent album releases include, “By the Stream“ with Phil Minton, “Hiss & Viscera” with Richard Scott, “Rough Tongue”, BEAM SPLITTER’s debut LP and latest “Split Jaw”, her solo album “Runt Vigor” and two records with MOPCUT, “Accelerated Frames of Reference” and “Jitter”. Chen has performed across Europe, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Taiwan, Brazil, Argentina, Ecuador, Canada and the USA. Some festival appearances include: Festival Beyond Innocence, Osaka; MaerzMusik, Berlin; Klangspuren Festival, Schwaz, Austria; NUMAcircuit, Tenerife; Sound of Stockholm; Jazz Saalfelden, Austria; Plateaux Festival, Torun, Poland; Color Out of Space, Brighton; 2pi Festival, Hangzhou, China; Jazz à Luz, Luz-Saint-Saveur, France; Now Now Festival, Sydney; Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville/FIMAV, Canada; Festival Ecuatoriano de Música Contemporánea, Quito, Ecuador; Wiener Festwochen and Wien Modern, Vienna.

Since 2011, she relocated to Berlin from Baltimore, Maryland, and continues to maintain an active international touring schedule.

As of: March 2024

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