Composers Festival spotlight: Bels Lontano

For the tenth year of the Mizzou International Composers Festival, the Mizzou New Music Initiative has added a number of new events, including teaming up with Columbia-based experimental music organization Dismal Niche to present two free late-night concerts on Thursday, July 25 and Friday, July 26 after the performances at the Missouri Theatre.

The performance at 9:30 p.m. Thursday, July 25 at Cafe Berlin will feature Bels Lontano curating a program of electronic music including works from MICF resident composers and from current and former students at Mizzou, as well as his own music.

Influenced by “love, anxiety, beats and ambience,” Bels Lontano is an experimental electronic dance music project from composer/producer Bret Bohman (pictured).

Embracing the notion that “music is therapy in both the act of creation and the act of listening,” and drawing on the traditions of IDM, house, hip-hop, contemporary classical, and ambient, “the project explores concepts of liminal spaces, natural beauty, therapy, and personal growth.”

Bret Bohman teaches composition, electronic music, guitar and ear training at the University of Missouri School of Music. He earned his doctorate from the University of Michigan, and with his spouse, composer and Mizzou faculty member Carolina Heredia, is a co-founder of the new music group Khemia Ensemble.

You can hear samples of the music of Bels Lontano in the embedded players below.

Music video for “Hope,” made by Bret Bohman using footage he shot during his 2018 trip to Europe