Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Auditorium
Sheila C. Johnson Design Center, 66 Fifth Avenue
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The Ruts of Performance: Guitarists Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn, Erika Anderson (EMA) and Ava Mendoza share and explain their methods of moving past creative walls. Moderated by Fabi Reyna, founder and editor-in-chief of She Shreds Magazine.


Hosted by the Center for Transformative Media at The New School, with Mannes College of Music


About Mirah:

Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn has been creating incorruptible independent pop music since the late 1990’s.  She has released over a dozen solo and collaborative recordings on K Records, Kill Rock Stars and various domestic and foreign independent labels.  

Defined by her graceful songwriting and adventuresome recordings, Pitchfork has praised her “incredible voice—a versatile coo that can flit from low, sultry tones to high, airy falsetto in one breath.”

Mirah has always sought the creative company of unique collaborators, from multi-media artists and orchestral composers to dj’s, Baltic music enthusiasts, and entomologists. A partial list of some of her collaborators includes Phil Elverum (The Microphones/Mount Eerie), Merrill Garbus (tUnE-yArDs), Tara Jane O’Neil, Khaela Maricich (The Blow), Melanie Valera (Tender Forever), Jherek Bischoff, Lori Goldston, Britta Johnson and Ginger Brooks Takahashi.

About Erika Anderson (EMA):

EMA is the solo performing moniker of guitarist/vocalist Erika M. Anderson, who shaped her experimental voice and guitar techniques in two well-regarded underground bands before setting off on her own. Anderson, who moved to Los Angeles from South Dakota when she was 18, played guitar with folk-noise outfit Amps for Christ in the late '90s and early 2000s, then formed the psych-folk band Gowns in 2004 with former Mae Shi member Ezra Buchla. After making three albums, Gowns disbanded in early 2010, and Anderson began working on solo material. Her single Grey Ship arrived about a year later and boasted a 17-minute version of Robert Johnson's "Kind Hearted Woman" that managed to reinvent the song drastically while remaining true to its spirit. Her debut album, Past Life Martyred Saints, appeared on Souterrain Transmissions in mid-2011. It was widely praised in the music press and, despite minimal marketing, it led to headline tours across North America and Europe. The following year Anderson began work on her second full-length with musician Leif Shackelford in Portland, Oregon. Titled The Future's Void, it arrived via Matador Records in April 2014. She explored the album's concepts of virtual reality, consumerism, and identity further with I Wanna Destroy (Sacred Objects from Suburban Homes), an exhibit that incorporated Oculus Rift technology and showed at MoMA PS1 in New York and London's Barbican. Anderson and Shackelford's referential score to the cyberbullying film #Horror arrived at the end of 2015.

About Ava Mendoza:

Ava Mendoza attended Mills College in Oakland and lived in the bay area in the 2000s, before moving to Brooklyn in 2013. She has worked with the pop folk band Tune-Yards as well as with Fred Frith, Carla Bozulich, Nels Cline and the Rova Saxophone Quartet and has written music for dance, theater and film. In Brooklyn she works with her own trio, consisting of the bassist Tim Dahl and the drummer Nick Podgurski as well as her band Unnatural Ways (with Dominique Leone (bass synthesizer, keyboards) and Nick Tamburro (drums)). In the field of jazz, she was involved in four recording sessions between 2007 and 2009. Stylistically, she moves between rock music, improvised music, free jazz and contemporary music, which she calls "complex heavy rock, avant jazz and warped, noisy blues.”

About Fabi Reyna (moderator): 

Fabi Reyna is a Mexican born, Texas raised guitarist as well as the founder and editor-in-chief of She Shreds Magazine—the world's first and only print publication dedicated to women guitarists and bassists. At 25 years old Reyna has built what was a small Portland based zine into a media company with a print circulation of over 40k distributed in 28 countries, a dedicated digital presence with over 100k monthly website visitors, as well as an events and creative agency. Outlets such as, Bitch media, Fender, New York Magazine, Stereogum, and many more have praised the editor for her passionate work to create an inclusive community within the guitar industry that transcends the boundaries of gender and genre—supporting radicalism, respect and revolution.

She Shreds Magazine Mission Statement:

She Shreds Magazine is the world’s only print publication dedicated to women guitarists and bassists. We strive to change the way women are depicted and presented in the music industry and popular culture by creating a platform where people can listen, see and experience what it means to be a woman who shreds. Our goal is to transcend boundaries like gender and genre—supporting radicalism, respect and revolution.