Originally used as a name for a weekly club for improvised music, the first actual Quaqua groups performed in the early 1980’s under the heading ‘Fête Quaqua’ at the now defunct London Musicians’ Collective building in Camden Town. The basic idea then, and behind most Quaqua projects now, is to extend existing collaborations / relationships between musicans in juxtaposition with new ones and thus provide a fertile ground for free improvisation.

This was an extension of the way a number of us had been working at the Little Theatre Club and the London Musicians’ Co-Op concerts at the Unity Theatre from around 1973 onwards, where personnel changed from concert to concert from a pool of musicians with different approaches, who shared a love of free improvisation. ( One notable exception to this modus operandi was the group ‘News from the Shed’ which initially was named ‘Quaqua’ for a UK tour. )

There are many connections running through the fine group of musicians taking part in this year’s event but they have never played together as a whole or indeed in certain combinations so it is possible to honestly say that you will never have heard anything like this before!

‘Quaquaversality’ means to point in all directions and the name ‘Quaqua’ is Latin for ‘whithersoever’.

Programme cover for the first ever Fete Quaqua


Fete Quaqua 2012 gratefully acknowledges support from The Swedish Arts Council