- Christopher Prosser
- Born: 1956
Chris Prosser started performing on electric violin with ‘fusion’ bands to large audiences (e.g. 75,000 at Nambassa Festival 1979, see Wikipedia). Then scaled down to acoustic concerts, particularly with piano, in theatres, churches and cafes. Recently most performances have been in the recording studio and some recorded works (e.g. ‘Pacific’ and much of the collection ‘Accordatura Violin’) have not been performed in public at all.
2008 back on stage for ‘free improvisation’. Currently in Wellington looking for new directions and opportunities. Performing with ‘Wellington Most Famous Orchestra’ and ‘The Doubles’ at diverse venues such as Te Marae Te Papa, St.Andrews-on-the-Terrace, Happy, Fred’s.
2011-2012: ‘New Klezeland’ klezmer band with J.Besser and R.Harris at the New Zealand International Arts Festival; ‘Chimera’ physical theatre show with S.Perfect at The Body Festival Christchurch; ‘Babylon’ voice theatre at NZ Fringe Festival; ‘Found’ exhibition as resident composer/performer at Adam Art Gallery Wellington; ‘Hunting Ground’ CD for solo violin and improvisations at Fred’s Wellington; ‘Silver Darlings’ arrangements of traditional Scottish songs with S.Mechan, CD and South Island tour; regular performances with SAMPLE collective Wellington.
Reviews of Recordings:
“[In Pacific] the themes are often stark and unvarnished, fitting cleanly into his circular, but highly precise arco style. The complete program taken in a single sitting can be an innervating experience. Prosser’s gravity of attack and dark tonal pigments leave little room for the casual listener to hide and the music can at times be merciless in its unremitting severity." -Derek Taylor, Cadence Magazine, New York
“A varied and engaging set of pieces. [In Pacific] a lot of the interest is rhythmic, with many folksy, dance-like movements and complex metres that produce a tumbling effect…often haunting.” -Andy Hamilton, The Wire, London.
“By using scordatura tuning against the conventional Indian tanpura [in Flight] Prosser is trying to create some sort of Indian atonality… … a fine violinist who produces some lovely sounds.” -John Mayer, Musician, UK.
“I am listening to [Pacific] with interest and admiration…Only the person who likes your music can help you, recommendations don’t mean much.”
-Ruggiero Ricci, Violinist
Reviews of Besser/Prosser:
“Whirlwind blows away all doubt…hyper-energetic stuff, music that can grab you by the scruff of the neck and shake any non-believer into submission. Using whatever style comes into their head, the two men guarantee to make a willing captive of even the most sceptical listener after just a few minutes.” -William Dart, New Zealand Herald.
“Mr Prosser…showed an astonishing talent for feverish improvisation [but] the music itself often lapsed into the kind of mannerism that holds… to a very irritating harmonic stasis which ultimately turned the evening into a personality indulgence on the part of the performers.” -Edwin Carr, Taupo Times.
“…he never missed a note or beat during the song despite breaking a string and then spearing the studio bar’s spotlight with his violin bow.” -Bill Blades, Wellington Evening Post.
“…an elegant sense of melodic line…rhythmic attack was sharp and precise…[however]Haphazard slashings of the bow or demonic karate chops at portions of the keyboard cannot hope to substitute for skilfully approached, well-considered climaxes.” -Philip Norman, Christchurch Star.Source: Christopher Prosser, May 2012