SEAMUS Member News — Fall 2016
John Akins’ latest electronic work, “Les Coqs de Delmas,” was premiered at the Christian Fellowship of Art Music Composers (CFAMC) national conference at Mississippi College, Clinton, MS, in October 2016, following a report on a musical missions trip to an orphanage in Haiti in 2013. Ambient sounds recorded on location in central Port-au-Prince were processed in Audacity into the short stereo piece.
Brian Belet’s composition Name Droppings was performed on the Kaleidoscope concert, Hammer Theatre, San Jose, CA, October 22, 2016. His composition Carla’s Carousel (co-composed with Virginie Viel), for Kyma controlled by two iPad performers, was premiered at the Kyma International Sound Symposium [KISS 2016], at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK on September 10, 2016. Dr. Belet also performed in concert with the symposium’s Emergent Ensemble (electric bass & Kyma), and presented a lecture/demo on using the electric bass as a general purpose controller for live computer processing.
In June of 2017, in New York, Collide-O-Scope Music will present “Fireflies,” an evening length collaborative work featuring SEAMUS members Christopher Bailey, Lou Bunk, Christopher Burns, and Elizabeth Hoffman. This performance will feature live poetry, original video art, and newly composed electronic and acoustic music woven together into a continuous montage and immersive intermedia experience. This production marks the latest in a series of collaborative Collide-O-Scope Music concerts. The boundaries separating one work from another are blurred as the group weaves from fixed composition to open form interactive and improvisatory episodes. (http://www.collidemus.com/)
The University of California, Irvine hosted a Saturday Academy: “Playing Music with Gestures” taught by guest artist Pamela Z with SEAMUS members Christopher Dobrian (Professor of Music) and Alex Lough (Ph.D. student in Integrated Composition, Improvisation, and Technology).
Ben Furhman released an album – Concrete Oasis . Full program notes can be downloaded here, and the album itself can be purchased or streamed via the usual music outlets.
Bass Clarinetist Jorge Variego presented the world premiere of Orlando Jacinto Garcia’s Conversations with Harry (conversaciones con Harry) for bass clarinet and fixed media as part of his solo recital on March 8 at 8:00 PM the Sandra G. Powell Recital Hall located in the Natalie L. Haslam Music Center on the University of Tennessee Knoxville, Campus. Principal clarinetist for the Simon Bolivar Orchestra, Gorgias Sanchez then performed the premiere in Venezuela on May 28 as part of the Festival Latinoamericano de Musica held in Caracas, Venezuela. Most recently clarinetist Fernando Dominguez presented the Florida premiere on October 21 at 7:30 PM in the Wertheim Performing Arts Center as part of the Florida International University Music Festival. All 3 excellent clarinetists are disciples in some way of the great Harry Sparnaay for whom the work is dedicated.
John Gibson announces the release of his CD, Traces, available from Innova (innova.mu/albums/john-gibson/traces). He will be leading a three-week residency for composers interested in electronics at the Atlantic Center for the Arts, beginning May 14, and invites graduate and post-graduate SEAMUS members to apply (atlanticcenterforthearts.org).
Lauren Hayes’s paper ‘Sound, Electronics and Music: an evaluation of early embodied education’ was recently given the 2016 Best Paper Award at the International Computer Music Conference, Utrecht. She was also recently invited to perform at the Fiftieth Anniversary of Experiments in Art and Technology which took place at Stony Brook University, October 2016. Her newest album of improvised hybrid analogue/digital live electronics is available through pan y rosas discos. More info at www.laurensarahhayes.com
In September, SEAMUS members, Andrew Litts and Ryan Olivier, presented their evening-length show, Imaginary Music, at the 2016 Philadelphia Fringe Festival. Litts and Olivier, performing as PhEAD (the Philadelphia Electro-Acoustic Duet), performed several original musical multimedia works, including Litt’s Singularity and Olivier’s Fortspinnung, as well as two multimedia arrangements of works by Steve Reich (Clapping Music) and Morton Feldman (Palais de Mari). DC Metro Theater Arts said of the show, “While Imaginary Music presents a highly intelligent synthesis of the arts with science and technology, it offers an equally lofty aesthetic of transcendent beauty; it is at once cerebral and emotive, intellectual and hypnotic.”
Scott L. Miller was a featured composer at the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre’s Sügisfest 2016 Fresh Music Festival, in Tallinn this October. He presented a concert of music with students who he tutored earlier in the year via Skype on the history, repertoire, and techniques for composing for instruments and electronics. This concert featured pianist Mari Visnapuu, who performed Miller’s Every Problem is a Nail and Davidovsky’s Synchronisms No. 6. The festival also presented a portrait concert of his work, performed by Ensemble U: and guitarist Mart Soo. While in Tallinn, Miller and Soo performed on the Improtest improvised music series as the duo Three Free Radicals.
In September, Miller premiered Islands, written for flutist Carla Rees, at Iklectik Art Lab in London and at the Kyma International Sound Symposium (KISS) 2016, held at DeMontfort University. He also assisted the ensemble rarescale in the U.K. premier of The Frost Performs its Secret Ministry, a work for flute, guitar, and electronic sound, and a performance of Anterior/Interior, written for and premiered by Rees in 2011.
Last summer, Charles Nichols toured with his band Modality, promoting the release of their double LP Under the Shadow of this Red Rock (https://modality.bandcamp.com/album/under-the-shadow-of-this-red-rock), playing the DAT Music Conference techno festival in Missoula, a downtown dive bar in Chicago, an opera space with Robin Cox and Ben Smith’s Big Tent surround audio and video system in Indianapolis, a college jam band bar in Columbus, and the Cube Fest spatial audio festival in Blacksburg, where dancers wearing his 3D printed motion capture rings spatialized the instruments around the 134 speaker spatial audio system of the Cube at Virginia Tech. Recent pieces include Beyond the Dark, synthesized sound for installation art and 3D projection by architectural artist Paola Zellner Bassett, Epimetheus Gift, a densely textured and spatialized piece for amplified bassoon, computer, and ambisonics for Steve Vacchi inspired by the Swedish extreme metal band Meshuggah, Describe the Sky to me…, ambient filtered environmental recordings and granulized bird calls for an installation with performance artist Marie Yoho Dorsey, and Wunderkammer, a trio for oboe, clarinet, bassoon, granular synthesis, and spectral delays, written for the PEN trio.
After his three week residency at OMI International Arts Center (Ghent, New York), composing and improvising with musicians from all over the world, Benjamin O’Brien returned to Marseille, France where he lives. Recently, he contributed audio as part of a commission from Tigrelab, a Barcelona-based video mapping and motion graphics firm, for their MUTIS audiovisual project, which premiered at the Signal Festival 2016 in Prague, Czech Republic (October 13-16). His fixed media work along the eaves was presented at the Sonic Environments festival in Brisbane, Australia last July, and most recently at the Malaysia Music Technology Festival in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in October. Additionally his work OSCines was presented at EMUFest 2016 at the Conservatorio Santa Cecilia in Rome, Italy. Notable upcoming events include a presentation of his vidéomusique work Piano Roll at the Diffrazioni Festival in Florence, Italy (November 21), and the premiere of Séquence et Vitesse for real-time interactive audio and visuals at Cité de la Musique in Marseille, France (December 1). He will be participating in a panel discussion on his chapter “Sample Sharing: Virtual laptop Ensemble Communities,” which appears in the “Oxford Handbook of Music and Virtuality,” at the Art of Record Production Conference hosted by Aalborg University in Aalborg Denmark. For more information on Benjamin and recent work and events, check out: http://benjamin-obrien.com
Brian Sears was featured as a guest composer, along with Felipe Lara, on the fall installment of the wildly popular Original Gravity concert series at Bone-Up Brewery in Everett, MA. Original Gravity events feature the music of New England Composers, paired with specially brewed craft beers in the brewery where those beers are created. This intimate, sold-out concert showcased two of Brian’s pieces, Reverberance, performed by Adam Vidiksis, and Live in the moment; Live in the breath, performed by Sam Wells. Sam also gave another inspired performance of this work at the 2016 Electroacoustic Barn Dance, hosted by Mark Snyder at the University of Mary Washington.
Temple University’s CYBERSOUNDS concert series was delighted to host Paul Rudy on October 27. Joined by saxophonist Spencer Edgers, Rudy presented three works involving improvisation, fixed electroacoustic media, and unusual instruments.
Also featured were new works by Sandra James, Andrew Litts, Benjamin Safran and Maurice Wright.