News – Moogfest 2018 adds Michael Stipe to conversations plus Hip-Hop Legends Pete Rock and Ali Shaheed Muhammad join Moses Sumney in Moogfest’s Final 2018 Lineup

Durham, N.C. [May 14, 2018] [press release] – Moogfest announced the final pieces to its 2018 festival with the addition of its free stage, located in the heart of downtown Durham’s American Tobacco Campus, plus the addition of Michael Stipe and Aminatou Sow to its conversation programming. This free ATC stage – aka Legends on the Lawn – opens on Saturday, May 19 and is co-presented with the support of WRAL.


Leading Saturday’s addition are legendary hip-hop DJs and producers Pete Rock (Pete Rock & CL Smooth) and Ali Shaheed Muhammad (A Tribe Called Quest), plus a full-band performance by indie-soul singer-songwriter Moses Sumney, who returns to Moogfest for the second time. Sumney will also join the Producer & Songwriters Masterclass alongside Alexandre Bazin, Gareth Jones, and Valgeir Sigurðsson.

Saturday afternoon will open with Moogfest’s much-beloved Modular on the Spot Picnic, an outdoor modular synth performance started in Los Angeles by modular synthesist and skate photographer Eric “Rodent” Cheslak with bassist Bana Haffar. This year’s three-hour picnic offers a laid-back, family-friendly listening environment for a mind-expanding exploration of electronic sound, transitioning into a more upbeat affair as the day progresses. The Modular on the Spot Picnic will feature a rotating cast of performers that includes Cheslak himself, along with Lightbath, Pete Speer, Jake Pugh, Lee Coleman, Jerry Kaba, and previously announced performer and daytime presenter Sarah Belle Reid.

SarahBelleReid Headshot 2017 SG - Sarah Reid
Sarah Belle Reid

New Conversation Additions

As previously announced, Michael Stipe’s audio-visual installation Thibault Dance will be featured in downtown Durham. Now the artist himself will return to Moogfest as well for a conversation on Saturday at 5 p.m. (ET) in the Carolina Theatre to offer insight on his current audio-visual work and his creative focus in the post-R.E.M. era.  Stipe will also be in conversation with Andy Battaglia from ArtNewsto present his new book, showcasing his multi-layered artistry narrated with experiences from his youth.

Michael Stipe had this to say on his participation this year:
“I get to return to Moogfest with the premiere of the second installment of my dance series, called ‘Thibault Dance’.  Creating these portraits means I get to work in video, which I love; with movement and performance, which I love, and with composing music as a reaction, which is new to me.  With my band I always had music to write against; in the case of these video portraits I am writing music to movement.  It turns the entire process on it’s head.  There is a trust between myself and the person I am creating a portrait of—  and that relationship, that ‘dance’, is important to me, and to the success of the piece.
With ‘Thibault Dance’ there’s clear nuance and tension.  Thibault’s performance is so powerful, showing immense strength—  a big part of that strength being his fearlessness as a performer in allowing vulnerability, awkwardness, humanity.
I like working with Moogfest because they pull the most exciting performers and thinkers together in what feels like a future version of what a festival can be, and I get to create an immersive experience with the video piece, and I get to discuss that piece and other work in different mediums with Andy Battaglia.  I am very much looking forward to it.”


Additionally, noted writer, podcast host, and Forbes “30 Under 30” recipient Aminatou Sow joins Chelsea Manning for the privacy activist’s Saturday keynote on the future of creativity. Manning and Sow will discuss how creative frontiers will evolve as privacy laws change in an expanding digital landscape in what will be an enlightening, eye-opening keynote.

Moogfest 2018 Free Programming Roundup

The ATC Stage announcement accompanies Moogfest’s previously released free programming that includes Ralph Steadman’s Harmon-INK! exhibit; Michael Stipe’s Thibault Dance installation;  the Modular Marketplace; the Moog Store and Moog Pop-Up Factory, which will be building the just-announced Moog Grandmother synth onsite; Vorticity, a collaborative sonified data installation between Nokia Bell Labs and Delta Sound Labs; Frivolous Artist: More Metal, a tactile, interactive live score piece by Wild Actions; Moritz Simon Geist’s robotics installation Soft Manipulator; the immersive environmental sculpture Infinity: Algorithmic Soundscapes from Magnetic Energy; a Moogfest poster and synth art exhibition; and the Reverb LP Record Fair.

Moogfest 2018 begins May 17th to May 20th(2018.  Tickets are still available by visiting their Eventbrite page.