Sound and vision

Eyedrum presents Open Improv Thursdays

Since opening back in August of 1998, Eyedrum has established itself as a progressive voice in Atlanta's arts and music communities. In the spirit of that open-mindedness, on the first Thursday of each month, the downtown space will present Open Improv Thursdays, in which people from all walks of life can show up with their instruments and create music — no practice necessary. "It's open to anyone," says co-host Robert Cheatum. "Whether you have an instrument or just want to listen."
Of course, improvisational music is not a new concept for Eyedrum, but this new monthly Thursday night event will coincide with a free monthly "gallery crawl" of participating downtown art galleries, creating a forward-thinking — not to mention free — feast for both the eyes and ears.
"Sometimes there are formats — solos, duos, trios or game forms," Cheatum continues. "Sometimes just 'open blowing' tends to be a very receptive, open atmosphere to whatever anyone wants to do."
The fruits of this improvisation will almost certainly be all over the map and it's difficult to say what role the hosts, Cheatum and Ben Young will play, but Cheatum's mention of the term, "game forms," promisingly brings to mind musical innovator John Zorn. As musical ringmasters, if Cheatum and Young can encourage anything in the same neighborhood as the sort of ambitious sonic experiments that Zorn is synonymous with, Atlanta's free-thinking music fans will soon have a new way of spending the first Thursday of each month.