From the iconoclastic John Zorn to a ‘drone metal’ trio head, here is a program not for the faint-hearted.

The Adelaide Festival never does anything quietly. After celebrating its 40th anniversary this year with more than a bang, 2014 promises musical megastars, electrifying electronica and revolutionary quartets with a healthy dash of pioneering theatre and radical writing thrown in.

Big, bold and exceedingly loud, American musical pioneer John Zorn headlines the Festival this year with four enormous concerts featuring a 40-strong ensemble. Direct from the US in his only Australian appearance, Zorn splices together the shifting world of improvisation with the traditions of composition in Concert 1 – Masada Marathon. This musical visionary is renowned for an eclectic concoction that traverses both genres and the limits of musical capability. Expect four hours of passion, experimentation and inspiration drawn from his Jewish Masada songbooks.

Concert 2 features Zorn and Laswell Duo in Essential Cinema and the interactive and unpredictable ‘game piece’ Cobra. Adding in the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and Elision Ensemble for fun, see what happens when Zorn introduces a vocal ensemble to a string quartet and a chamber orchestra. Finally, [email protected] is a birthday celebration highlighting the spectacular diversity...

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