Apples & Olives Festival

Apples & Olives Festival


New Amsterdam Records is pleased to announce the 2018 Apples & Olives Festival! After two successful editions in 2014 and 2016, the Swiss festival returns from March 7-10 in Zürich clubs EXIL and Moods, showcasing unexpected connections between contemporary classical, avant-garde pop, improvised and jazz music on all four evenings. This year's festival is programmed by an international team of curators, consisting of conductor and violinist Etienne Abelin (CH), pianist and composer Nik Bärtsch (CH) and NewAm co-founder and co-artistic director Judd Greenstein.

See below for the full festival line-up, and for more information please visit



Nik Bärtsch (CH) with students from the Zurich University of the Arts 

Greg Fox (US)

"Modul Movements" is a collaboration between Nik Bärtsch and the ZHdK and the festival's first collaboration with the ZHdK. The residency of Nik Bärtsch at the ZHdK this semester also includes working with an ensemble of classical and jazz musicians. The group has worked out their own interpretations of existing and new pieces by Nik Bärtsch for the final concert of this project. From the creative cycle of composition, interpretation and improvisation arise modular pieces that are specially shaped by this musical organism.

As the second act of the evening, the New Yorker drummer Greg Fox presents a solo program. Greg Fox is one of the most virtuoso drummers in the US and known for his work with Liturgy and Zs. In his solo music, the sound alchemist creates a fusion of spirituality and virtuosity through his special blend of electronics and live percussion.



Nicolas Stocker (CH) 

Daniel Wohl (FR / US)

The second evening in Exil will be opened by the Swiss percussionist Nicolas Stocker (Kali, Nik Bärtsch's MOBILE) with his new solo percussion program developed in Berlin. Stocker develops arhythmic structures and meditative sounds, based on his sophisticated art of polymetric play.

Los Angeles-based Daniel Wohl presents his compositions for electronics and strings in the second set with a string quartet (Ronny Spiegel, Olivia Momoyo Resch, David Schnee and Solme Hong). His music is a landscape of constantly changing colors and precise contrapuntal details.


Friday, MARCH 9 / MOODS:

Bent Knee (US) with students from the Zurich University of the Arts 

Marena Whitcher (CH) and ensemble

In the first set of the evening, the band Bent Knee plays a new piece with an ensemble of 7 percussion students of the ZHdK (coordination Gregor Hilbe) - in cooperation with the Ecstatic Music Festival New York.

As a second set of the evening, the Zurich singer Marena Whitcher plays her own songs together with an ensemble specially set up for the A & O Festival, in the adaption of Maximilian Grossenbacher.



Maarja Nuut & HH

Kaspar Ewald's Exorbitantes Kabinett

The final evening the festival will be opened by the Estonian violinist and singer Maarja Nuut. Maarja Nuut plays with Hendrik Kaljujärv on electronics as well as a newly developed video work by Estonian artist Kristjan Suits, which further develops the previous collaboration with Nuut. Theme is a mystical journey, inspired by nature and the music of Maarja Nuut.

After a long pause in composition, the Swiss composer Kaspar Ewald, composition lecturer at the ZHdK, is writing a new piece for his Exorbitantes Kabinett: The suite is called "Rotant" and continues Ewald's artistic path between Funk and New Music. Based on meditative minimalist patterns, the musical language will fan out to eruptive expressionism.