Gay Guerrilla Girls

Live Performance

18th of May 2019, Berlin

Produced by the Schinkel Pavillon e. V.
In collaboration with Maya Shenfeld
Disappearing Berlin

Julius Eastman, Gay Guerrilla (1979)
Arranged for guitar by Dustin Hurt


Performing Artists: Rossella Bottone, Greta Brinkman, Sky Deep, Klara Gustaffson, Tina Jäckel, Valerija Kravale, Flavia Messinese, Julia Reidy, Benita Rigo
Veslemøy Rustad Holsete, Alexa D!saster, Tabea Schrenk, Maya Shenfeld, Donya Solaimani, Eva Sterk, Lea Taragona



“What may be happening in this work, what may soon occur tonight is an example of how music can be organized differently: the usual hierarchical order and stricture to complete an orchestral sound is no longer basis, but something else. […] Here, stands sixteen women gay guerrillas. If Eastman’s composition was to cast light on inequality and discrimination, that basis, if it was a call for a cause to be uncompromising, that purpose, then artist Maya Shenfeld has taken up this provocation: she has gathered an ensemble of women on electric guitar and bass— she is Carrie Brownstein and Corin Tucker, she is Elizabeth Cotten, she is Gail Ann Dorsey, she is Peggy Lady Bo Jones, she is Carole Kaye, she is Kim Gordon, she is Meshell Ndegeocello, she is Esperanza Spalding, she is Tina Weymouth, she is “who knew,” coming to fill the stage. And as much as this is a reenactment or could be said to be part of the fervor of a market-incentive revival of Eastman, there is something else going on. Something that, I think, Eastman would have appreciated. A community is being strengthened and there is a queering occurring. Tonight’s Gay Guerrilla uncomfortably shows just how unusual it is to see so many women in this position, and it is part of overcoming the debasing of women instrumentalists and, all the more so, women composers. […] Indeed, music needs a body, a political base (or many basses) for spiritual communion. The basicness of the ground that Eastman called on and made art for is translated here tonight by women, seriously electric.” (Excerpt from Laura Preston’s text, May 2019).