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Brian McCorkle is a composer and co-director of the Panoply Performance Laboratory (with Esther Neff). He is a musician and performer based in New York City.

Brian McCorkle is a composer, musician, and performer. In addition to his work as What Color is Your Machine Gun? and with the composer's collective Varispeed, he is the Co-Director of the Panoply Performance Laboratory (PPL) with Esther Neff. PPL makes large scale performance art operas in addition to duo and small group performances around the world. PPL also operates a space for experimental music and performance in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.



Listen to PPL's first full-length recording of their 2011 opera, Institute_Institut


These are some excerpts from operas composed with and for the Panoply Performance Laboratory:
Any Size Mirror is a Dictator
The Last Dreams of Helene Weigel
On the Cranial Nerves of Barbarians


EotW: PPL Presenting As "Christen"

Friday, February 3rd 2017

USER: "Christen"
MODE OF ENGAGEMENT: Usership translated and interpreted by PPL into Presentation


A: How operating?
3: affectionately 70%

This inquiry is dis-sembling realities
Generating an operation which controls
Developing anti-extraction/coercion methodologies
First, assigning all operations to an autonomous pre-conditioned element

As part of opera-of-operations "Embarrassed of the Whole" Phase II:

Vehicle Relocation Program

Friday, January 6th 2017

Friday, 1/6, 8p: individual performances at Panoply Performance Laboratory in Brooklyn.
Saturday, 1/7, 8p: collaborative performances (by car) at Palanzos Beer in Pittsburgh.
Sunday 1/8, 6p: Join us at 6p for an open discussion on the politics of touring in a post-fossil fuel/post-trump America. 8p: Individual performances at Palanzos Beer in Pittsburgh. 

Ten artists, five per car. Small bundles of supplies and some instruments. What did you forget to bring that you can retrieve where you are now? Vehicles, metaphors, motives, motion, bodies inside bodies. How long does the trip take when you're hungry? Taco Bell or Pizza Hut? From where to where? How long does the trip take? Until, I mean, wait, how long does the trip take when you swallow until you can't? Have you been here before? Have you gone the distance? This is the middle of the road. This is the lane. Try not to break down in the tunnel. Bridge between something and something. This is my house. No spitting in the car. 

A 3 day performance event between brooklyn, pittsburgh, and many a flying J and rest area en route, featuring:

Jill Flanagan (Forced into Femininity) : Isn’t it just like a woman to be mischevious, impetuos and impulsive, to want the freedom to what she likes? And isn’t it like a woman to be mysterious, impenetrable, to have depths in which we plunge in vain in search of some lost part of ourselves? Jill Flanagan thinks so, and she’s here to spread her twisted hysterical ideology with a little soft shoe routine and some jazz standards.

Valerie Kuehne : accross the country, dopamine filling stations are popping up like deerticks. Watch your childhood melt in front of your eyes and change your perception in the warmth of a truck stop bathroom. There is no way to prepare yourself for what is happening right now.

Brian McCorkle is the co-director of Panoply Performance Laboratory (PPL) with Esther Neff. Originally from Detroit, McCorkle is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, digitial artist, and maker of damn fine broths and sauces. His solo work has involved aluminum foil, vasaline, analog devices, and bird cages. He is the proud parent and primary mechanic of one of this project's vehicles.

David Ian Bellows/Griess is a sculptor, video maker, sporadic disseminator, retired performance art/shadowy denizen.

Esther Neff is the co-director of Panoply Performance Laboratory (PPL) with Brian McCorkle. She likes tubes and theory and clay. She hails from a celery bog and often accidentally breaks the small bones of her extremeties while performing some inquiries into natures for natures which appear temporarily like mold on the walls of the shower.,

Kaia Gilje is a defender of the most vulnerable patterns, roughly handling and tenderly padding when futures abruptly end in a growl. She has made nests, looms, arrangements, decisions, and actions in many different locations. 

Adriana Disman is a performance art maker, thinker, and curator based in Toronto and Montreal.

Ali Asgar is a visual and performance artist from Bangladesh. Ali is working as a freelance artist for last few years in Bangladesh and moving forward with his work concentrated on the issue of gender minority and queer identity. Through his performances and other visual narratives Ali is constantly trying to pushing the gender norms of the country and making spaces to talk about this issues in a public forum.

Spitline is a multidisciplinary performance art duo that creates experiences that fully immerse audiences in real life scenarios.

Thousandzz of Beez :

A 5-15$ donation will be collected at each event for the participating artists.

The Brooklyn Experimental Song Carnival : DAY 5 : Jeff Young/Anaïs Maviel/ellen o/Naked Roots Conducive

Wednesday, October 7th 2015

Naked Roots Conductive & The Super Coda are THRILLED to present the first annual Brooklyn Experimental Song Carnival.


We will no longer force experience from experiment. We will create a context in which song once again births ritual. We will perform in protest of prescription bullshit and radio decay. We'll attempt to witness song writing and sung performance from as many different angles as possible: from inception to decay, from influx to arborescence, from the entertaining to the funereal. We will dance between the lines of song and narrative, explosively. DAY FIVE :


8p @ Panoply Performance Laboratory -

Jeff Young -

Anaïs Maviel -

ellen o -

Naked Roots Conducive -

$10-20 at the door

(no one turned away)

Help the traveling artists cover their costs!!!!! -

to read more about what this is happening go here -

fight off your demons.

Say Something In a Little Bit of Time

Wednesday, October 28th 2015

Say Something In a Little Bit of Time


Have been thinking more about the birthday show. I would like to have 10 five minute sets. Some solo, some duo. The theme would be say something in a little bit of time. The lab part would be the challenge of the five minute set. 10 sets equal 50. Does that sound cool?


Rita Stein
Sam Gordon
Rob Price
Brian McCorkle
Brendan Landis
Valerie Kuehne and Natasha Steinbach
Fester w/ Sean Ali
Lipchitz w/ Ryan Krause
Michael Foster
Dear Nugget w/ Aliza Simons

WTF is "experimental" music?

Wednesday, June 24th 2015

Improvisation and treatment are dealt with in a performance by Colin Black from Australia, a presentation by Jen Baker on her work with Dafna Naphtali as Clip Mouth Unit, and a performance by Derek Baron of the group Causings.


Derek Baron -

performing: "Harpist"

Derek Baron is a musician and sound artist from Chicago, IL, currently based in Brooklyn, NY.  In this piece for drumset, objects, and signal processing, he explores archival memory, cloud storage, and the sonic possibilities of total digital recall.  Derek is a founding member of the experimental improvising collective Causings.

Jen Baker -

presenting her work with Dafna Naphtali as Clip Mouth Unit

Jen Baker is a NYC-based trombonist who champions new music, often featuring multimedia aspects. As a soloist, she has appeared at festivals around the world as both a performer and masterclass teacher. Jen has premiered numerous solo and chamber works, including her self-composed First Nation's Ley, Concerto for Multiphonic Trombone in San Francisco. As a founding member of Bang on a Can's Asphalt Orchestra and the musical theatre work, Beowulf, she has toured internationally and nationwide. She has also performed with TILT brass, S.E.M Ensemble, SFSound, Fort Wayne Philharmonic, and has worked with a variety of artists including Yoko Ono, Fred Frith, Pauline Oliveros, Susan Marshall, and the Merce Cunningham Dance Company. She is featured on the soundtrack to Werner Herzog's Oscar-nominated  Encounters at the End of the World, and can also be heard on Blue Dreams, an album of her own solo multiphonic compositions.


Colin Black -


The Cracks In The Mind Between Here And There!

In this work Black builds an improvised multi-facetted intimate aural geography in which human imprint is present. The work artistically unearths various dimensions and properties of our notions of place, space and culture. It is a form of live sonic ethnography that seeks to reveal the complexities and diversity that exists in communities and our relationship with localities. This work focuses on bringing attention to elements of culture that could remain silenced, restrained in private thought or overlooked aurally due to the overbearing “noise” of stereotypes, preconceived beliefs and concepts. Because the work is a synthesis of various streams of collected sonic data, it differs from pure fielding recording (e.g. phonography or audio journalism) in that the improvised work artistically expresses this collision of data containing sometimes contradictory elements.



Short Bio


Colin Black

“… amongst the most significant Australian creative artists of his generation, a composer/sound artist who has created a significant body of important work in a relatively short time, work which spans installation, sound art, fìlm, radiophonic works, and beyond, with many of these works having gained international attention.” - John Davis, CEO Australian Music Centre, 25 February 2011

Colin Black is an internationally acclaimed composer/sound artist having won the 2003 Prix Italia Award and being described by Prof. Seán Street in his book The Poetry of Radio: The Colour of Sound as a “key figure” in radio art and experimental sound based work. Black’s work explores concepts related to fragility, the morphology of cultures, our changing relationship with place, and human mortality. His work aims to enfold the un-embraceable through the ephemeral metaphor of sound that disappears instantly once it is heard. For Black, audio recordings are artistic elements that are poignant reminders of people, places, objects and events that have already changed, past or no longer exist. Black is a doctorial graduate of the University of Sydney where he was a recipient of the University of Sydney Postgraduate Awards Scholarship and more recently he has become a visiting research fellow at Goldsmiths, University of London.



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