the guardians

The Guardians: An Elegy
by Sarah Manguso

The Guardians opens with a story from the July 24, 2008, edition of the Riverdale Press that begins, “An unidentified white man was struck and instantly killed by a Metro-North train last night as it pulled into the station on West 254th Street.” Sarah Manguso writes: “The train’s engineer told the police that the man was alone and that he jumped. The police officers pulled the body from the track and found no identification. The train’s 425 passengers were transferred to another train and delayed about twenty minutes.”

The Guardians is an elegy for Manguso’s friend Harris, two years after he escaped from a psychiatric hospital and jumped under that train. The narrative contemplates with unrelenting clarity their crowded postcollege apartment, Manguso’s fellowship year in Rome, Harris’s death and the year that followed—the year of mourning and the year of Manguso’s marriage. As Harris is revealed both to the reader and to the narrator, the book becomes a monument to their intimacy and inability to express their love to each other properly, and to the reverberating effects of Harris’s presence in and absence from Manguso’s life. There is grief in the book but also humor, as Manguso marvels at the unexpected details that constitute a friendship. The Guardians explores the insufficiency of explanation and the necessity of the imagination in making sense of anything.

The Guardians from Sarah Manguso on Vimeo.

Review Excerpts

  • The Paris Review febuary 2, 2013
    “The Thursday edition of the Riverdale Press carried a story that began An unidentified white man was struck and instantly killed by a Metro-North train last night as it pulled into the Riverdale station on West 254th Street.” 
  • BOOKFORUM feb/mar 2012
    “Manguso’s embrace of rhetorical failure itself constitutes an unusual and strangely affecting lament.” – Jenny Davidson
  • VOGUE DAILY february 28, 2012
    “Manguso captures with great delicacy the spinning compass of her grief.” – Megan O’Grady

No longer available:

  • ELLE – march 2012
    “Manguso sees her way artfully and with heart.”
  • DBC READS – february 28, 2012
    “The writer Sarah Manguso is a cut above.”

the wulf. @ moca sunday studio presenting music and workshops

07.03.2011 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm
the wulf. @ MOCA sunday studio presenting music and workshops.


*Matt Barbier and Luke Storm – JUZ by Wolfgang von Schweinitz and a new work by Larry Polansky – 1:00 to 2:00 pm (trombone and tuba)
*Christine Tavolacci – performing Carlos Inderhees’ Buch fur Flöte – 2:00 to 2:55 pm (flute)

*Mark So – Twice Around – 1:00 to 3:30 (cassette playback)

Harris Wulfson – LiveScore – 1:00 to 1:45 pm. (for mixed ensemble)
Performers: Ezra Buchla, Heather Lockie, Christine Tavolacci, Eric Clark, Casey Anderson
*Mike Winter – room and seams – 3:00 to 3:20 pm. (for chimes and strings)
Performers: Mark So, Scott Cazan, Liam Mooney, Corey Fogel, Ezra Buchla, Eric Clark, Laura Steenberge, Heather Lockie
*Corey Fogel – drums – 3:30 – 4:00 pm

*Casey Anderson – Whitespace – 1:50 to 2:30 pm (for radios)
Performers: Corey Fogel, Casey Anderson, Colin Woodford, Colin Wambsgans, Liam Mooney
*Tashi Wada – TBD – 3:00 to 3:30 pm

*Eric KM Clark – Experiment in Memory and Pitch – from 2:30 to 3:00 pm (speaker playback)

*Laura Steenberge – new work – from 2:20 to 2:50 pm (for three stringed instruments)

*Ezra Buchla – COMPRESSION OF THE CHEST CAVITY MIRACLE – 3:20 to 4:00 (for viola and live electronics)

*Daniel Corral – NEOTROPE – 1:00 to 1:30 pm (for six accordions)
*Dicky Bahto – Documents – 1:30 to 3:00 pm (film)

*Alan Nakagawa – Isocube – 1:45 to 2:15 pm (home-brew electronics)

*Artmaking Activity – 1:00 to 3:45 pm
*Daniel Corral – Music Boxes & Card Pieces – 1:00 to 4:00 pm
*Scott Cazan – new piece – 1:15 to 2:20 pm (home-brew electronics)
*Liam Mooney – 180° – 2:20 to 2:50 pm (triangles and dry ice)
Performers: Mike Winter, Liam Mooney

John Cage – Number 6 – workshop – 2:50 to 3:30 pm
Led by Casey Anderson

@ the wulf.: this Sunday – 8:00 pm: music of harris wulfson – lost intuition, durations, livescore

08.29.10 8:00 pm
in memoriam harris wulfson
harris wulfson – lost intuition, durations, LiveScore
performed by casey anderson, eric km clark, april guthrie, orin
hildestad, kathy pisaro, gary schultz, mark so, laura steenberge,
christine tavolacci, and mike winter
(followed by grillout with dr. hildestad as chef)

@ the wulf. 1026 s santa fe ave #203 (code 2-0-3 to enter) la ca 90021

the wulf. is located at 1026 south santa fe avenue #203, los angeles,
ca 90021 (southeast downtown close to where the 10 meets the 5).

the wulf. is officially a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization. tax
deductible contributions to the extent permitted by law may be made
payable to the wulf. if you are interested in contributing, please
visit our donate page linked on our website. nonetheless, as we are
just getting started with performances at the wulf., we are lacking
performance space necessities (most importantly, seating); so bring a
cushion, pillow, or chair if you want to relax comfortably on the
concrete floor (though we now have a carpet down).

tunebook a

ab duo

I looked at Harris’s entry on Wikipedia yesterday and discovered that someone had updated it with the following information:

In December 2008, Scrapple Records issued a recording of Jeremy Woodruff’s Tunebook A as realized by the AB Duo (Seth Meicht and Jeremy Woodruff on saxophones and flute), a work dedicated to Wulfson.

“Too Much for a Pogie” by AB Duo. “Tunebook” by Jeremy Woodruff (realized by AB Duo). “Tunebook” includes recordings of Seth Meicht and Jeremy Woodruff on saxophones and flute. Created in New York City and Berlin, Germany from July-September 2007 (Pogie) and July-November 2008 (Tunebook). “Tunebook A” is dedicated to Harris Wulfson (1974-2008).

Scrapple Records AB-Duo – AB Duo’s Pogie Tunebook (2009) is available for purchase online at bandcamp.



the wulf. presents @ the stone, nyc.

11.19.2009 8:00 p.m.
the wulf. presents @ the stone, nyc.
music by eric km clark, joe kudirka, larry polansky, mark so, laura steenberge, mike winter and harris wulfson.

tentative schedule:

8:00 – 8:45: Harris Wulfson; LiveScore.
8:50 – 8:55: Eric km Clark; new piece.
9:00 – 9:45: Mike Winter; for gregory chaitin.
9:45 – 10:00: Pause.
10:00 – 10:05 – Larry Polansky; 34 Chords.
10:10 – 10:25 – Laura Steenberge; Lucifer in the Shadowlands.
10:30 – 10:45 – Mark So; amid mounting evidence [readings 26], JOHN ASHBERY (2 short litanies), readings 32 – Landscapeople.
10:50 – 10:55 – Laura Steenberge; Elevator Music.
11:00 – 11:15 – Joe Kudirka; Love Letters.

“3 bagatelles,” march 21st, 2009 in los angeles

Saturday March 21st 8:30PM
The California E.A.R. Unit presents a concert of young American-based composers

REDCAT-Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater
CalArts’ downtown center for innovative visual, performing and media arts, 631 W. 2nd St. Los Angeles, CA. 90012

Saturday March 21, 2009 – 8:30 PM


“Triumphantly out there… The California E.A.R. Unit is known for taking left turns away from convention.” Los Angeles Times
Inspired by the classic David Bowie pop hit, The E.A.R. Unit surveys fresh new works by young mavericks. The ensemble plays Daniel Wohl’s driving yet oddly sentimental +ou-, Oscar Bettison’s haunting Gauze Vespers veiled with simmering sonorities from dual toy pianos and other innovative orchestrations, Ryan Brown’s Our Friend Adam a verbal play on “Our Friend Atom” a short film that introduced the atom bomb to Ryan as a child who mistook atom to be Adam, Jamu for ensemble and electronics by Christine Southworth drawing from Gamelan melodies, Clay Chaplin’s Rememories, a structured improvisation using 3-D video as a meta-structure for the ensemble based on the relationship of time and memory, Harris Wulfson’s eclectic simplified violin solo 3 Bagatelles, and an exciting new work from the Carlsbad Music Festival Tsar, Matt McBane.

$20 [students $16, CalArts $10] Box Office: 213.237.2800

These performances are funded in part by grants from the City of Los Angeles, Department of Cultural Affairs, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, The James Irvine Foundation, LA County Arts Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Argosy Foundation Contemporary Music Fund, BMI Foundation, Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation, the Amphion Foundation and other generous supporters.

Note: Harris’ work will be performed by Eric km Clark

“3 bagatelles,” february 21st, 2009 in new york

From Eric km Clark:
I’m coming back to NYC to do this joint solo show with Mr. James Moore, and it will be an oddly good time.

Also, some of you may find it of interest that I’ll be doing the first NYC performance of Harris’ piece “3 Bagatelles”. It’s beautiful.

Event: February 21, 2009: James Moore (New York)/Eric km Clark (Los Angeles)
What: Performance
Host: Experimental Music at the Ontological-Hysteric Theater
Start Time:Saturday, February 21, 2009 at 10:00pm
End Time: Sunday, February 22, 2009 at 12:00am
Where: Ontological-Hysteric Theater at St. Mark’s Church, 131 east 10th street and 2nd ave, new york city, 10003

harris ‘n’ dave at levels, june 19th, 1993

I wonder if anyone still has a poster from this event? If I’ve left anyone off the performer list, please let me know!

Harris Wulfson – Violin, Mandolin, Guitar, Vocals
Dave Sollors – Guitar, Vocals
Jamie Forrest – bass
Russell Gellman – drums
Dan Horwitz – keyboards

The Brass Holes:
Alex Feinman
Ben Whitney
Mike Kohan


Harris 'n' Dave at LEVELS, June 19th, 1993


experimental music and george antheil’s ballet mecanique, May and June 2008

May 7, 2008
I’m playing in three concerts this weekend. These are the final shows this season in the Object Collection series. See me performing movement while being deprived of both vision and hearing in a premier by Eric Clark! Witness me wandering around the stage with a violin in Aaron Meicht’s incredible music-theater piece “Bermal”. Drumming with chopsticks on guitar in a piece by Travis Just? And more!
And next month, my piece Enumerated Types will be part of the “George Antheil‘s Legacy” concert on June 7th at 3-Legged Dog. Come and hear my music, along with George Antheil‘s Ballet Mechanique performed by the robot collective, Lemur.
For those not in New York, all performances will be streamed live by free103point9 (7pm New York time).
Get the stream here:

May 8, 7pm:
Eric Clark (New York), Christoph Ogiermann (Bremen), Craig Shepard (New York)

May 9, 7pm:
Gisburg (New York), Paula Matthusen (New York), Aaron Meicht (New York)

May 10, 7pm:
Turf Boon (Dublin) [featuring Jennifer Walshe], Travis Just (New York), Quentin Tolimieri (New York)
Alex Barreto, Eric KM Clark, Kara Feely, Travis Just, Aaron Meicht, Seth Meicht James Moore, Quentin Tolimieri, Jennifer Walshe, Harris Wulfson

All performances at:
Ontological Theater
St. Mark’s Church
131 E. 10th St. at 2nd Ave.

tickets: $10, $20 gets you into all three concerts as well as all three NOISE! events
(The 3 performances in May are partnered with the annual NOISE! festival. NOISE! shows are 10pm-1am in the same theater.)
Experimental Music has received generous support from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts.



On WNYC Soundcheck

Soundcheck America’s show on Antheil was replayed tonight on NPR. This performance, Antheil’s Legacy (PDF), on Jun. 7 2008 was written up in the NY Times: link to NY Times or here (PDF).

The show is about the George Antheil’s Ballet Mecanique. At 17:40 minutes into the broadcast, Harris gets a mention as a composer who has written music in the tradition of Antheil though they don’t play any of his work.

“One of the great curiosities of 20th-century music is “Ballet Mécanique,” a 25-minute percussion-and-piano extravaganza featuring 16 player pianos, electric bells, airplane propellers, an alarm clock and a siren, by Trenton-born composer George Antheil. The groundbreaking work is now being staged in a performance…by robots. Charles Amirkhanian, the music executor of Antheil’s estate, and Eric Singer, the director of the League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots, join us with a preview.

“Ballet Mecanique” premieres with an automated orchestra as part of the performance Antheil’s Legacy on Jun. 7 2008 at 9:30pm at 3LD Art & Technology Center.”

“As a special kickoff for a three-week run, of the new 80-minute play based on Antheil and Lamarr called “Frequency Hopping,” its performance on Saturday night was followed by a 70-minute concert titled “Antheil’s Legacy,” conceived by the composer and producer Charles Amirkhanian…  In the concert, “Ballet Mécanique” was preceded by performances of recent works by Luke Thomas Taylor, Harris Wulfson and Lukas Ligeti that explore various uses of digital music-making.”

Click the link for an archive stream of the Soundcheck broadcast: Ballet Mecanique, Performed by…Robots