(download article in pdf) In an essay titled “I Want to Find The Music, Not to Compose It”, Tom Johnson writes about a type of musical minimalism he remembers as “process music”, saying that “in [all] these cases the “composers” …
In this article, centered on my work Tramespace I (2012–13), I elaborate on my thoughts about music from philosophical and musical perspectives. Behind my perspectives is the idea of a “metaphysical space in music composition” that acts as an anchor for these ideas. This “metaphysical space” is a major concept in my doctoral dissertation at Columbia University. However, throughout this lecture I do not refer explicitly to this concept. Instead, two consequential aspects of this metaphysical space are emphasized throughout: (1) the act of composition is not just an act of writing and expressing but also, as soon as the writing takes place, one must engage him/herself in the act of listening; and (2) because of (1), the aspect of the “self” that is engaging-in-(1) is illuminated. Which leads to the existential question: “who am I (who composes)?”
My most recent pieces are a form of chamber music in which traditional musical instruments interact with everyday objects: lamps, fans, mirrors and rocking chairs play together with violins, pianos, bass clarinets and cellos.
In these "mini theaters", furniture and things acquire musical features thanks to their proximity to musical instruments, constituting a hybrid world of mixed categories.
Three musicians are on stage. Let us say it is a piano trio. They start concentrating, signaling that a performance has started. There is a long silence. Then the cello plays a sound, a simple note on the A string, lasting just a few seconds. Again, a silence – it is hard to tell how long exactly. It could be a minute, it could be many minutes. Then, out of nowhere, a piano note sounds, at the same pitch as the cello note heard before. Silence once more. Then, at some moment, the performers look at one another, and relax. Apparently, the piece is over. The violin has not played at all.
Preliminary note The research explored in this article is part of the work I am currently doing at doctoral level at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London, under Professor Julian Anderson’s supervision. Introduction Vectorial harmony is an idea …
Cathy van Eck
A taxonomy of the use of birds in composition
Sound is at heart full of difference. There is no such thing as a static sound. Even the simplest timbre, a single sine wave without overtones, comes about through differences: the push and pull of air molecules as the soundwave …
Die Improvisation und der Komponist. Eine In-ein-ander-Setzung. “Aber in gewisser weise trauere ich über etwas, das damit zu tun hat, daß, sagen wir, Schubert mich verlassen hat,” Morton Feldman Als Komponist, wie viele andere um seine materielle Existenz …
With his well known story about two sounds heard in an anechoic chamber, John Cage reminds us that there is no actual silence where listening (namely the phenomenology of sensing or hearing vibration) is taking place. Two remarkable observations follow …
As the world of Sonic Arts evolves to define itself, sound artists the world over are pushing the boundaries of creativity. This challenges us in simply categorizing their works as Sonic Art, as the broad scope includes Albums, gallery installations, …
Amsterdam, 14 april 2011 Wij, Nederlandse scheppende kunstenaars, nemen afstand van de kaping van het kunstbegrip door de beleidsmakers en kunstmanagers die beweren namens ons te spreken, zoals de “Tafel van Zes”. Met ongetwijfeld de beste bedoelingen spreekt deze managerselite …
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Composition: Yannis Kyriakides
Images: Isabelle Vigier
Text: Thomas Platter, Travels in England (1599), English translation by Clare Williams, Cape (London: 1937)
Commissioned by Sound and Music, March 2009
First publication The Ear reader, November 2010
1. De belofte van Muziek Art, and above all, music has a fundamental function, which is to catalyze the sublimation that it can bring about through all means of expression. It must aim through fixations which are landmarks to draw …
Ik kan me niet herinneren dat ik ooit gecomponeerd heb zonder het besef van mijn muzikale repertoirekennis. Het enige wat ik me van de vroege jaren herinner, behalve dus al het imiteren, was de uitvinding van de 3/8-maat. Ik had …
Anne La Berge
Composer/performers divide their time between conjuring up concepts, structures and scores and showing up on stage to play. They thrive on a precarious balance between creating...