Slowly rising from hibernation, The Hague’s Grey Space in the Middle is collaborating with sound artist Hilde Wollenstein for this first online edition of Moving Downstairs.
Moving Downstairs is a bimonthly programme that focuses on concerts, auditory performances and experiments, immersive sound pieces and collective experiences. Depending on the setting, the audience might be seated, standing, dancing, behind a screen, or specifically placed inside the basement of The Grey Space.
With the intention to explore a particular, individual sense of sound within a clear, collective structure, Hilde has written a score for eight performers, following a continuous dream narrative.
Richard Barrett: ‘To me, music is a way of understanding the world’
28 January 2021. Text: Myrthe Timmers.
A new chair has been added to the partnership between Leiden University and the Royal Conservatoire The Hague. Richard Barrett has been appointed Professor of Research in Creative Music (ACPA) as of 1 December 2020. ‘For me it is important that music and academia are not placed in an ivory tower.’
Barrett’s career is atypical for someone at the humanities. After studying Genetics and Microbiology, he made the switch to music at the age of 20. He became a composer and performing musician, but did not forget about science. ‘When I write about music, I always do so with scientific precision. It helps me to think in details.’
A long track record
This approach is useful to him at the Royal Conservatoire, where he has a long track record as a teacher at the Institute of Sonology. According to him, his new appointment ensures that he and his students can develop themselves further. ‘At the conservatoire, I sometimes mentor people who, after their two-year master’s, feel that their research has only just begun. As a professor, I can start building a community, giving them the opportunity to develop themselves further and to add more depth to their subject.’
Community and collaboration
The word ‘community’ comes up more often during the conversation. According to Barrett, music and academia are disciplines that are preferably practiced together. ‘The past year I have been researching improvisation in various disciplines, from dance to technology. I translated the results into music. The coming year I want to test these ideas with a group of improvising musicians from the conservatoire. This way we can arrive at new insights together.’
Academia as a bridge
The exchange between music and academia is useful to a position that includes the goal of strengthening the collaboration between the university and the conservatoire, but for Barrett it is more than a mandatory part of his job. Barrett: ‘To me, music is a way of understanding the world, but this is probably an unfamiliar idea to a lot of people. One of the reasons for “research in creative music” is to find ways to express and explain things like this to a wider audience, so I see the university as a platform from which to build bridges between the music and the public.’
The Academy of Creative and Performing Arts (ACPA) provides artistic research and education in the arts. ACPA is a research institute of the Faculty of Humanities and part of a partnership between the University of the Arts The Hague and Leiden University. This ensures, among other things, that students can combine an academic study with art courses at a university of applied sciences.
All those who are interested in the Audio Communication & Sonology double degree master’s programme are invited to attend an information session on 2 February 2021 at 3 pm. The meeting will take place via Zoom.
Kees Tazelaar and Richard Barrett (Institute of Sonology, Royal Conservatoire, The Hague) and Stefan Weinzierl (TU Berlin) will be available to answer questions about the content and administration of the programme.
The new label “ovaal” has released its first album on bandcamp today with music by Sonology student Aleksandar Koruga. Ovaal is dedicated to experimentation and improvisation in a live setting. The concerts take place in intimate locations, where the aim is to catch the performer in their habitat. Ovaal hopes to be a traveling platform, weaving together various streams of sound and people. all performances are curated and released by Sonology student Hilde Wollenstein.
0 01 was performed and recorded in November 2020 at Annastate, Den Haag. Aleksandar Koruga is a musician, composer and software developer born in Osijek, Yugoslavia. His work focuses mainly on human-machine interaction and its applications in live performance, compositions and installations.
Aleksandar has developed his own algorithmic system for improvisational practices, in which all sonic elements evolve continuously, weaving together sections of long climatic arcs. He combines his knowledge of acoustics, mathematics and computer science with a conscious musical instinct, synthesizing gritty, raw and high tension performances.
Electroacoustic Music Days 2020 is the 19th annual festival of electroacoustic music in Greece and is co-organised by the Hellenic Electroacoustic Music Composers Association (HELMCA) and the Computer Music Lab of the Department of Music Technology and Acoustics of Hellenic Mediterranean University on 11, 12 and 13 December 2020.
The festival due to covid-19 travel restrictions will be instead live streamed through HELMCA’s youtube channel.
This year we have invited the long friend of HELMCA, composer Simon Emmerson to talk and present his work. We will present a video of his talk and a concert dedicated to his music.
The program consists of ten (10) concerts in 3 days, 54 compositions, 2 of which includes music by members of ICEM (International Confederation of Electroacoustic Music). The international part of the festival this year includes also music from the honorary and the founder members of CIME/ICEM: Francis Dhomont, Elzbieta Sikora and Barry Truax.
The organizing committee Katerina Tzedaki, Nikolas Valsamakis
Sonology Alumnus Billy Johnny Bultheel would like to invite you to his new work The Minutes of Olomouc, developed for the PAF film and performance festival in Olomouc, CZ. It is a music performance for a live stream, featuring Steve Katona and Alexander Iezzi. The work will be streamed on the following platforms on Friday 4 December 2020 at 9pm. Please tune in! Facebook WEB TWITCH IG LIVE @billjohnbultheel.
Cendres was premiered on GRM’s Acousmonium in Paris on 18 October 2019. The work highlights the relation between high-level control processes and purely computer-synthesized sounds. Polytree was first performed at the Institute of Sonology in June 2018. The piece is created within a custom algorithmic environment and through extensive use of waveshaping processes. It focuses on using composed waveforms for movements in time and formal structures that emerge from lower-level synthesis methods. The album versions have been heavily reworked and extended since the original concerts. The pieces are an outcome of my research into algorithms, especially regarding interrupts, intervention, and dynamic, adaptive environments. The research has been documented in the links here below, although the two final pieces stand very much on their own. https://www.researchcatalogue.net/view/540350/540351https://www.researchcatalogue.net/view/543155/543156
A few weeks earlier, Volume & Void was released on the Superpanglabel. Volume & Void was composed through experimental scheduling algorithms that explore the duality of immediate, direct events with gradual and evolving processes. The music was created during the summer of 2020 in Scheveningen, The Hague. https://superpang.bandcamp.com/album/volume-void
Pamela Madsen wrote a chapter about a work by Anne La Berge that was premiered in Dag in the Branding with LOOS performing. The chapter is in the recently published book Between the Tracks. https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/between-tracks
Roland Kayn ist ein fast vergessener Exponent der Nachkriegsavantgarde. War er 1964 Gründungsmitglied des legendären Improvisationsensembles „Nuova Consonanza“, wendete er sich in den 70er Jahren ganz der elektronischen Musik zu.
Der 1933 in Reutlingen geborene und von 1970 bis zu seinem Tod 2011 in den Niederlanden ansässige Komponist war seit Mitte der Fünfzigerjahre mit seinen Instrumentalkompositionen für Orchester und große Ensembles auf allen wichtigen Podien und Foren der Neuen Musik präsent.
Schon während seines Studiums der Kirchenmusik in Stuttgart war Kayn durch den Arbeitskreis von Max Bense mit der Informationstheorie in Berührung gekommen. Nach einem Studium bei Boris Blacher in Berlin experimentierte er mit neuen Formen der zeitlichen Organisation. Typisch für seine Zeit dienten auch ihm die Theorien, Modelle und Termini aus der Informationstheorie, Physik und Mathematik als Referenz.
Kayn bezeichnete seine Werke ab Mitte der Sechzigerjahre als kybernetische Musik, denn seine Instrumentalkompositionen stellten immer auch der Frage, mit welchen Steuerungsmethoden Unbestimmtheit, Zufall und Improvisation auf befriedigende Weise in die Kompositionsprozess einbezogen werden können.
Erfahrungen und Fragestellungen auf diesem Gebiet resultierten zum Teil aus der eigenen Praxis, denn Kayn war 1964 gemeinsam mir also Aldo Clementi und Franco Evangelisti Gründungsmitglied des legendären Ensembles Nuova Consonanza.
Stücke enormer zeitlicher Ausdehnung
Ab den Siebzigerjahren setzte eine verstärkte Hinwendung zur elektronischen Musik ein, die bis zum Ende seines Lebens die Instrumentalkomposition fast vollständig ablöste.
Nach vereinzelten Produktionen in fast allen wichtigen Studios Europas entwickelte sich ab 1970 eine fast zwanzig Jahre andauernde Zusammenarbeit mit dem Institut für Sonologie in Utrecht.
Dort produzierte Kayn eine große Zahl elektronischer Werke, darunter seine großdimensionierten Zyklen „Tektra“, „Scanning“ und das 14-stündige „A Little Milkyway of Sound“.