Meredith Bates (2024 — present)

I’m delight­ed to join the CNMN board of direc­tors to serve as a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the West Coast. The vision and mis­sion of the CNMN are very much in align­ment with my prac­tices as artist and arts admin­is­tra­tor. I believe we can always do bet­ter when it comes to rais­ing the bar for equi­ty in arts orga­ni­za­tions and I’m here to fur­ther that con­ver­sa­tion at the CNMN. I’m a great admir­er of the work that CNMN does on the ground and have par­tic­i­pat­ed in the PCM Hub. I hope to work with oth­er mem­bers of the board to expand on such ini­tia­tives and build new and excit­ing adven­tures for our grow­ing new music community. 

JUNO and WCMA award-win­ning vio­lin­ist and com­pos­er Mered­ith Bates has thor­ough­ly embed­ded her­self in the Cana­di­an musi­cal land­scape, both as a gen­er­ous col­lab­o­ra­tor and increas­ing­ly as a pow­er­ful and idio­syn­crat­ic solo artist.

Grate­ful­ly bas­ing her­self on unced­ed Coast Sal­ish ter­ri­to­ry in “Van­cou­ver”, the mul­ti­ple-award win­ner has devel­oped a rep­u­ta­tion for both refined intro­spec­tion and unfet­tered vir­tu­os­i­ty on her instru­ment. She has spent the past twen­ty years record­ing and per­form­ing around the world in ensem­bles such as JUNO and West­ern Cana­di­an Music win­ning instru­men­tal band Pugs and Crows, and the avant-cham­ber pop out­fit Gen­tle Par­ty. She’s also involved in projects led by Van­cou­ver scene stal­warts such as Peg­gy Lee, Tony Wil­son, Leah Abramson,Lan Tung, Ruby Singh, CR Avery, Joshua Zubot, and Ford Pier.

A big part of Bates’ endur­ing ver­sa­til­i­ty is her com­mit­ment to stay­ing artis­ti­cal­ly curi­ous. She has stud­ied pri­vate­ly with every­one from renowned clas­si­cal music ped­a­gogue Philippe Djo­kic to acclaimed exper­i­men­tal­ist Car­la Kihlst­edt, and has con­tin­ued to invest in the expan­sion of her sound through oppor­tu­ni­ties such as the late Jer­ry Granel­li’s leg­endary Cre­ative Music Work­shop in Hal­i­fax, and res­i­den­cies in cru­cial cen­tres for cre­ative explo­ration includ­ing Stock­holm’s Fylkin­gen, West­ern Front (Van­cou­ver), and the Banff Centre.

This inquis­i­tive spir­it can also be wit­nessed in the con­sid­er­able range of Bates’ artis­tic projects. She is the founder and leader of Like the Mind, a sex­tet of cel­e­brat­ed female impro­vis­ers from Van­cou­ver and Stockholm—namely the afore­men­tioned Lee, Lisa Ullén, Lisen Rylan­der Löve, Elisa Thorn, and Emma Augustsson—and of Sound Migra­tions, a col­lab­o­ra­tive endeav­our com­bin­ing mul­ti-chan­nel elec­troa­coustic sound­scapes with processed pho­tog­ra­phy. In 2019, Bates found­ed the Impro­vised Arts Soci­ety which sup­ports process-based inter­dis­ci­pli­nary expe­ri­ences through­out the year and two mul­ti-day fes­ti­vals of per­form­ing arts: Lis­ten, Lis­ten Fes­ti­val and the West Coast String Sum­mit. Mered­ith also serves on the Sea­grass Music Soci­ety and Cana­di­an New Music Net­work board of direc­tors and is par­tic­i­pat­ing in the BC Arts Council’s Path­ways Program.

In 2019, Mered­ith released her ambi­tious solo debut, the 2‑disc If Not Now on Phonomet­ro­graph, which gar­nered both praise in the media and a Polaris Prize long-list men­tion. Her sim­i­lar­ly expan­sive follow-up,Tesseract, released in 2023, was also met with­ac­claim in notable press out­lets. Van­cou­ver Sun’s Stu­art Derdeyn called it “haunt­ing and com­plete­ly addic­tive” while vet­er­an crit­ic Marc Mas­ters list­ed it among The Best Exper­i­men­tal Music on Band­camp for June 2023. “Tesser­act is ulti­mate­ly mood music in the best sense,” Mas­ters not­ed. “It not only can alter your cur­rent mood but con­jure unfa­mil­iar ones. That’s espe­cial­ly true on the 46-minute title track, a mon­u­men­tal col­lage of hums and roars that could be revis­it­ed for­ev­er.” Tesser­act was nom­i­nat­ed for Best Instru­men­tal Album of the Year at the 2023 JUNO Awards. |