about the VORTEX

The Vortex is a concert series that presents new and improvised music to audiences in the New England area. We also host house parties and give masterclasses and workshops at colleges and high school music programs. Other locations have included The Nave Gallery in Somerville, Zumix, 260 Sumner St in East Boston, The Somerville Armory, Outpost 186 and the Democracy Center in Cambridge.

The Vortex Series present concerts that span diverse musical styles and artistic disciplines, finding a common venue for both modern and improvised music. While most performers have a strong affinity for improvisation, this is not required. They may have a background in jazz, or classical training, or be completely self-taught. We actively seek performers from as diverse backgrounds as possible. We only ask one thing: be open.

The Vortex Series varies greatly from month to month. Listeners expect the unexpected. The shows are rarely rehearsed, and combinations of performers who have never performed together before are the norm. Often the show takes a natural form based on who is playing, and it is never set in stone. For example, two separate groups may play two distinct sets, or they may play separately and then together. The “band” of the night could also be a guitarist, a dancer and a painter. It could sound like modern jazz, modern classical, avante-garde, electronic music, beat poetry, or something less easily definable.

With so many categories given to music, we believe in breaking down musical boundaries, giving both composer and improviser the opportunity to express themselves.