Ben Lamar Gay's Hecky Naw! Angles! with Thurman Barker's South Side Suite

Event Type
Event Description

Timed to coincide with the Chicago Jazz Festival, two generations of Chicago-born composers share an evening honoring the history and future of musical experimentation and the profound influence that Chicago’s musical legacy played in shaping the minds and lives of the members of the AACM and beyond.

Ben LaMar Gay, a next-generation member of the AACM, offers a new dance and video collaboration Hecky Naw! Angles! This performance is the latest work in his series The Manipulations of Lines and Bref, that explores the term “Americana” and examines the social construction of history. Gay, a cornetist and composer, draws on a variety of styles in order to present a narrative through his work. Exploring the shapes and sounds of black social dances in Chicago, such as stepping and line dancing, the performance incorporates video projections by Kim Alpert with experimental choreography created and performed by Raquel Monroe. Thurman Barker and Ben LaMar Gay: South Side Suite and Hecky Naw! Angles! is presented as part of the MCA’s New Works Initiative.

Percussionist, composer, and educator Thurman Barker presents a quintet version of South Side Suite, a new long-form ensemble work set to be released in 2019 that looks back at how Chicago’s music scene influenced his body of work. Known for his technical skill across a variety of styles including jazz, blues, Broadway, and Motown, Barker was a founding member of the New York City branch of the AACM and has toured with several notable artists including AACM founder Muhal Richard Abrams. For South Side Suite, Barker pays homage to growing up in Chicago and its deep and lasting influence on his compositions.



Running Time
90 minutes with intermission
Dance Styles
Modern / Contemporary


Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

220 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 397-4010