The kaleidoscopic talent of Douglas Ewart has expressed itself in so many forms-instruments that double as sculptures, music that combines the traditions of four continents with fresh inventions, masks and costumes fit for rituals ominous or joyous, death-defying improvisations combining master musicianship and acting-that the whole might be mistaken for the work of a small culture rather than one man.
Douglas is known in some circles as a maker of brightly colored "rain sticks," man-tall "totem flutes," percussion instruments, and panpipes. Elsewhere he is known as a maker of leather goods and instrument harnesses, or as past president of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) and instructor in the AACM School of Music-or yet again, as a performer of original music with Muhal Richard Abrams, George Lewis, Anthony Braxton, and others.
Finally, Douglas is known for his work as a lecturer and workshop director throughout the United States. Turning the kaleidoscope of his work over in one's mind, one sees how the various disciplines he practices interrelate, influence, and play off one another. The disciplines assemble on the stage of Douglas' mind, in fact, much like the ensembles in which he works either as a sideman or as a leader. www.bambooewart.net
Douglas performs at The Velvet Lounge on Thursday, October 25.