Michael Weilacher was born (1969) in Rochester, NY where he grew up studying the piano and later percussion at the Eastman School of Music. Michael was in his earliest years active in the local orchestra scene as well as the rock music scene. He later attended the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music where he studied with Alan Otte and the Percussion Group Cincinnati and received his Bachelor's diploma in music performance. While in Cincinnati he worked as a freelance musician in diverse rock groups, a steel drum band as well as with dancers from different schools in the area including from the Conservatory. After finishing his Studies, he received an invitation to study as an assistant to marimba player Robert Van Sice at the Rotterdamse Conservatorium in the Netherlands. He did his first performances in Europe in Gent, Belgium (1992) in the New Ears festival with the guest composer Mauricio Kagel. There he became acquainted with several Belgium composers and musicians alike; Frank Nuyts, Karel Goeyvaerts, Lucian Goethals, Gotfried Willem Raes, Luk Vaes and Geert Logghe to name a few. While studying in Rotterdam, Michael became acquainted also with the Belgium new music ensemble Champ d'Action and after receiving his 'Masters' diploma, moved to Antwerp to work with the ensemble.
Michael moved to Belgium in 1993 and worked there both as a soloist and as a performer in several music groups; ensemble Musique Nouvelle, Zeitklang (with Alain Franco), Ictus ensemble, QO2, Blindman Quartet, the Royal Flemish Opera (with Rene Jacobs), the Royal Flemish Philharmonic, Il Novecento, the Young Philharmonic Orchestra, and several others.
Michael's solo carrier has brought him recognition in Europe as well as abroad where he has performed and given master classes in Brazil, U.S.A., Canada, Finland, Italy, Portugal, France, Poland, Greece and elsewhere. He has worked with the composers James Wood, Steve Reich, Helmut Lachermann, Volker Staub and the Belgium composers Serge Verstockt, Geert Logghe, Frank Nuyts, Eric de Visser, Frederic Rzewski (lives in Brussels),and Karel Goeyvaerts. Michael has made recording of works from these composers as well as some of his own works for solo percussion as well as ensemble pieces. Michael has been working extensively with vzw De Krijtkring and the artistic director Luc Mishalle, where he performed for the opening ceremonies of Brussels 2000, Cultural Capital of Europe, and furthermore composed pieces for Fanfarrah who performed in the Zinneke parade as part of Brussels 2000.His work with the this organization led him into other fields including music theater, where he along with Luc Mishalle and Guy Cassiers created a piece based on texts from the American writer Sam Shepard.
Michael has worked with the Ictus ensemble and the Rosas dance company where he performed the new creation APRIL ME in the De Munt theatre in Brussels. He continued to work with other dancers in Belgium including ex Rosas dancers Vincent Dunoyer and Roberto Olivan. Michael has recently worked with the world renowned dance company Sasha Waltz and guests where he played with the German new music ensemble Musik Fabrik for the opening of the new art center Radial System in Berlin.
He has recorded a full length CD with the composer Paulo Chagas and will be performing some of his music next year in Brazil as well as in California. Michael plans to continue his work with Ictus and will be giving workshops in Bethlehem, South Africa, Mozambique as well as concerts and workshops in the US.
Michael performed and composed for Kris Dane and The Banned and Ictus ensemble. He is also engaged to write and record music for some short films as well as a proposal to perform for a new dance piece that will take place in Frankfurt in September and October 2007.
Michael currently lives in Berlin, Germany and performs regularly with Kammer Ensemble Neue Musik Berlin, Musikfabrik, Ictus Ensemble and with Sasha Waltz@Guests. Likewise he has recorded for film and radio and is currently involved in numerous projects ranging from film music to Dub. Michael’s interest in hand drumming has as well led him to the Tablas. He is currently studying in Berlin with the world renowned Tabla guru Pandit Sankha Chatterjee. Michael has previously studied diverse hand drumming techniques from Darbukka to Pandiero but considers himself to be an autodidact and improviser on these instruments as well a highly skilled percussionist and interpreter of contemporary music. Michael has played the Tablas for film recordings in Berlin and plays Tablas as well as vibraphone and percussion in the band “5 Star Hotel”.
Projects tagged with [Michael Weilacher]
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LABORINTUS II (Ictus & Mike Patton)
Luciano Berio : Laborintus II | Ictus, Mike Patton, Georges-Elie Octors. Ipecac CD.1 soundcloud track