Ethan Marks

Ethan Marks


On-site event June 1st

“A secure and pleasant vessel, carrying inside it a disaster retold” 

Olga Ravn, The Employees

VESSEL is a long-form performance installation for trumpet, mutes, speakers, fixed media, and feedback. 

Traditionally, the constant airflow required to play the trumpet is so taxing that the instrument can typically only be played in short bursts. The amount of pressure can cause stroke, even death. 

VESSEL removes the physiological demands by reversing the flow of air: a 5” speaker pumps sound into the bell and out of the mouthpiece. The air normally blown by the trumpeter is mimicked by a fixed-media recording of steam engines. A contact mic in the mouthpiece sends the trumpet-altered recording back into the speakers, wrapping the sound on itself in a feedback loop mimicking the trumpet’s slides. 

An expanded duration is possible. Death is pleasantly averted. The performer is less musician and more sculptural caretaker, securing the system, ensuring that the disaster inside is retold.

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Ethan Marks is an experimental trumpet player and producer whose work deals with the collision between body and instrument. His music is usually improvised, sometimes silly, and has involved feedback, video, noise, household objects, power tools, and plundered recordings. Two self-released albums, dune and bloom, are about smells and biomes. He directs a DIY noise series, Sounds Poetic, in downtown Los Angeles, and co-directs High Desert Soundings, in Wonder Valley, outside of Joshua Tree. Ethan lives in LA with his cats, Leela and Morbo.

Artist Location: Los Angeles, CA

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Posted in Artists 2024.