Click here to download Tamara’s music/sound resume. Click here to download Tamara’s academic CV.
Originally from Colorado, Tamara is an artist and scholar based in Oakland, California. T believes in the arts as a space for human transformation and liberation. For 15 years, they have composed music, designed sound, and performed in theater, dance, film, performance art, and music ensembles. With each project, T continues to explore the possibilities for sound and music to create new worlds – some fantastical, others very real.
Tamara has worked with theater companies across the country, in everything from major regional houses, storefront black boxes, university arts centers, and experimental and site-specific settings. Highlights include Steppenwolf Theatre Company, the Goodman Theatre, Arena Stage, San Jose Rep, Lookingglass Theatre, About Face Theatre, Next Theatre Company, Teatro Luna, LaMicro Theater, Chicago Dramatists, Ragged Wing Ensemble, American Theater Company, and Northwestern University. T has collaborated with artists including Mary Zimmerman, Frank Galati, Andre Pluess, Michael Bodeen and Rob Milburn, Clinton Turner Davis, Yuriko Doi, Erik Ehn, Joanie Schultz, Kimberly Senior, and Tanya Saracho.
Tamara’s theater music ranges from original songs, incidental and underscore instrumentals, musical theater, and a full-length opera. T is comfortable in a variety of styles: pop (old and new), folk, classical, hip hop, and various world music forms. They are known for working with casts (including non-musician actors) to generate scoring that can be performed live with voices, instruments, bodies, and sometimes everyday objects. As a sound designer, T feels equally at home creating realistic effects, atmospheric ambience, large multi-layered sonic events, and magical audio worlds.
Tamara has also written and performed music for dance, film, and live storytelling and radio events. Highlights include Serendipity Theatre Collective’s 2nd Story Festival and the score for a series of short films on racial reconciliation for the Coming to the Table organization. T’s compositions and arrangements for ensembles have been performed by the Colorado College Collegium Musicum, Chicago Kings drag troupe, Denver’s Canto Spiritus, and in their own groups, The Singing Bois and The Crane and the Crow.
Tamara performs regularly as a percussionist, singer, and bandleader. They currently lead and perform voice and percussion in The Singing Bois, a genderqueer pop quartet. T is also the lead buleadora for Las Bomberas de la Bahía, an Afro-Puerto Rican music and dance ensemble, and has performed guest spots with Afia Walking Tree and the Spirituals Project Choir. T has studied percussion and voice with master artists including Melanie DeMore, Carolyn Brandy, Afia Walking Tree, Michaelle Goerlitz, as well as composition with Ofer Ben-Amots.
Tamara is Assistant Professor of Music at University of California, Berkeley, where they teach courses on popular music and politics. T speaks frequently on music, identity, and cultural politics in a variety of venues in the U.S. and abroad. In 2013, T co-founded the Spiritual Technologies Project to explore early African American music through research and performance.