New Orchestra Workshop Society
Making Music NOW!
We present the values of creative improvisational music through performances, workshops, concerts, tours, recordings and publications in Vancouver and abroad. We create community through respectful collaboration and partnerships. We are committed to reflecting our times and location through the presentation of varied artists, providing opportunities for diverse collective creation. The values of egalitarianism, representation, inclusiveness, parity and non-hierachical forms are vital to our practices. Our social space, 8EAST, is for gathering and the making and sharing of new culture; a safe space for voices to speak and be heard.
We gratefully acknowledge that we make music on the unceded and Indigenous lands of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm, Skwxwú7mesh and səlil̓wətaʔɬ Nations. Our social space for new culture, 8EAST, is located in historic Chinatown in the place now known as Vancouver. We collaborate with artists around the world.
The NOW Society began as a community initiative designed to support the vibrant community of Vancouver improvisers. Lisle Ellis, Paul Cram, Paul Plimley, Gregg Simpson and Ralph Eppel founded the New Orchestra Workshop (NOW) Society in 1977. Since then, leadership has also included Clyde Reed, Paul Bruce Freedman, Graham Ord, Kate Hammet Vaughan, Don Druick, Roger Baird, Ron Samworth, Nikki Carter and since the spring of 2014, Dr. Lisa Cay Miller. NOW has a history of presenting stellar new works by improvising ensembles in unique and engaging concerts, of collaborating with international artists of commissioning new compositions, of domestic and international touring, and of producing celebrated recordings and publications. NOW Society presents improvisation workshops, and has been presenting them public for over 40 years at the Western Front. Our most exciting new program is the establishment of the 8EAST social space for new culture. Workshops take place at 8EAST, as well as creative improvised music performances, community collaborative events, and informal historical and neighbourhood talks.