The Mopomoso Workshop Group is a free weekly improvised music workshop at the Troy Bar in central London open to all musicians. The workshop is run by group members without a “leader” or facilitator.
The workshops are a mixed gender group, they aim to be an open space with no judgement and value everyone’s contributions. Deborah Chin told us about the sessions and what attendees can expect.
‘All that is needed is an interest in free improvisation. This is a bit different from standard jazz improvisation practice; free improvisers start without any tunes, any rules or predetermined structures. It is very exciting and liberating; you never know how an improvisation is going to proceed! We welcome players of all instruments, as well as players of any sound making artefacts and electronic instruments and devices, and of any standard or level of experience.’
Deborah also said that a musician once turned up with a TV aerial which was played with a bow. She explained why the workshops are so important to her and the group.
‘Personally I find that playing this music has allowed me to think about and develop my own musical “voice”, as well as to learn from listening to others. Having voices from people with diverse identities and interests means that our music-making will be richer and speak to more people. Women’s voices at the moment are somewhat underrepresented and we’d like to change that!’
On the third Monday of the month, in the downstairs Sevilla Mia bar at the same location, they also run monthly gigs with professional improvising musicians. A selection of the musicians who take part in the workshops are also invited to perform. ‘This provides us with an extraordinary opportunity to play alongside world class improvising musicians.’
The group has performed at venues that provide platforms for freely improvised music across London including the Vortex, Iklektic, New River Studios and the 100 Years Gallery.
If you would like to get involved you are welcome to just turn up to the free to attend workshop. They run from 7pm – 9pm every Thursday in the Troy bar, 22 Hanway St, W1T 1UQ, near Tottenham Court Road Station. Contact Deborah Chin email@example.com for more information. www.mopomoso.com