André Ruschkowski



Program notes

Composers Edition Vol. IV


 

NASOMA


1996, 10:14

Studio for electronic Music of the University Mozarteum Salzburg

The composition NASOMA derived from the basis of the "Salzburgtrum" project, which was first performed in 1995 in Salzburg at the festival ASPEKTE. "Salzburgtrum" is a 60 minute composition, comprising of 12 sections. These are respectively characterised through specific combinations of original tape recordings made in Salzburg, electronical arrangements, and instrumental tone.
The form sections of the "Salzburgtrum", form the material base for NASOMA. As a result of the electronic compression of the time scale, chronologically condensed variations of the original "Salzburgtrum" segments arise, that - divergent to the original sequence - can be simultaneously and successively newly combined.
The new electronic tone structures which consequently occur, were examined for their dominating musical characteristics using a computer program for sound analysis, and newly assembled using modified and variant characteristics.

 

WEISSER SCHLAF


1997, 10:25

Soprano: Sigune von Osten

Studio for electronic Music of the University Mozarteum Salzburg


The composition „Weißer Schlaf“ for soprano and tape is directly related to a poetical text „Der Schlaf“ by Georg Trakl. The structure of that text - which is used in both it‘s first and second versions - provides the foundation for the musical structure and the soundscape of the whole piece.
The texts was then recited by soprano Sigune von Osten and the results recorded on tape. The sounds of these recordings were analysed in different ways with the help of a computer. The analysis results includes parameters about the time- and frequency structure of ground tones and overtones of the speech voice. These parameters were the starting point for the elaboration of the soprano voice and the tape.
The structure of the musical composition is directly related to the recordings with the recited Trakl-texts. For this purpose the time axis of the original recordings were stretched (about 8 to 12 times) in a linear method to keep the original text proportions.
The frequency spectra of the stretched text recordings were divided into four octave bands. This was necessary for the separation of the rising and decreasing ground- and overtones of the speech voice in these different frequency areas.
The sound material of these octave bands was then analysed by the means of Fast Fourier Transformation (FFT) to find out the dominating frequencies in these areas and their changes in time. In a following step these frequencies were transformed into musical pitches and finally became the starting point for the composition of the soprano part.
The tape includes exclusive sound material derived from the Trakl-texts recited by Sigune von Osten. The original tape has 4 tracks and includes sound material from 15 audio tracks used during the composition process on a harddisk recording system (ProTools). For the splicing and movements of sound this material was projected in a virtual performance space around the audience. The 2-channel tape transforms the original room movements - as far as possible - at a position in the back room (depth) of a front stereo panorama.
The Tape Version is not entirely identical with the Concert Version for soprano and tape. The Tape Version includes the same tape part but a different „electronic soprano voice“. That means there is a solo voice on the tape which is oriented at the live soprano part of the Concert Version but with further going possibilities of sound variation and timbre modification by electronic means.
The final form of the piece and the different timbre characteristics are mostly a result of a simultaneous overlapping of the two texts by Georg Trakl recited in different ways with their specific electronic transformations.

Georg Trakl
DER SCHLAF (1. Fassung)


Getrost ihr dunklen Gifte
Erzeugend weißen Schlaf
Einen höchst seltsamen Garten
Dämmernder Bäume
Erfüllt von Schlangen, Nachtfaltern,
Fledermäusen;
Fremdling dein jammervoller Schatten
Schwankt, bittere Trübsal
Im Abendrot!
Uralt einsame Wasser
Versanken im Sand.
Weiße Hirsche am Nachtsaum
Sterne vielleicht (?)!
Gehüllt in Spinnenschleier
Schimmert toter Auswurf.
Eisernes Anschaun.
Dornen umschweben
Den blauen Pfad ins Dorf,
Ein purpurnes Lachen
Den Lauscher in leerer Schenke.
Über die Diele
Tanzt mondesweiß
Des Bösen gewaltiger Schatten

Georg Trakl
DER SCHLAF (2. Fassung)


Getrost ihr dunklen Gifte,
Weißer Schlaf!
Dieser höchst seltsame Garten
Dämmernder Bäume
Erfüllt von Schlangen, Nachtfaltern,
Spinnen, Fledermäusen.
Fremdling! Dein verlorner Schatten
Im Abendrot,
Ein finsterer Korsar
Im salzigen Meer der Trübsal.
Aufflattern weiße Vögel am Nachtsaum
Über stürzenden Städten
Von Stahl.

 

LES PAS INTÉRIEURS


1997, 11:10

Studio „La Muse en Circuit“ Paris

The sonic point of departure for my composition „Les pas intérieurs“ („inner steps“) were recordings made in the immediate surroundings of the studios in Paris-Alfortville on the 21st and 22nd of August 1997 in the daytime as well as during the night. I captured the sounds of peoples‘ footsteps walking or running in this specific acoustic enviroment, with their various sound characteristics and tempi. In addition and as a contrast to this „concrete“ sound material, electroacoustic sound generated by means of Granular Synthesis was also used. All material was multiplied and transformed and fit into a structure which largely corresponds to the original sound recordings.
The original source material is perceptable in the final composition only at certain moments, for, in some cases, it is overcast by heavy electronic transformations, and in others, the volume is sometimes much reduced for reasons of musical dramaturgy. This process could be described - in analogy to fine arts - as an „acoustic layering technique“.
The title „Les pas intérieurs“ thus refers both to the sonic point of departure, and to dynamic transitions between different musical states in succsessive stages of this composition.

 

SUCCUBUS-QUARTETT


1994, 20:27

Studio for electronic Music of the University Mozarteum Salzburg

The central idea of the piece is the artistic design of the inner parts of different sounds by means of interpolation and transformation. For this the sounds were splitted up into their micro structure. These elements are always there in the original but normally unhearable separately.
The title of the piece reflects this kind of elaboration too: Succubus is a synonym for the process of making hidden things recognisable and Quartett stands for the number of basic sounds used in this piece with an intensive interaction among them.
In SUCCUBUS-QUARTETT four short sound recordings of applause are the starting point (“Small Clap”, “Big Cheer”, “Clapping” and “Big Clap”). During the piece these samples are modified by means of digital sound shaping in that way that subtle transitions from one sound quality to another were possible. In that process the sound elements are passing different paths of transformation which are characterised by individual combinations of the musical parameters density of events, ambitus, pitch band, shape of the envelope and „vividness“.
In the elaboration process the following digital procedures were used: 1.) linear and non-linear time stretching with and without transposition of the original sounds, 2.) the flowing away of continuos original sound into separate sound elements and the rebuilding of continuos sounds from separate sound elements, 3.) rhythmic modulation, timbre modulation and dynamic filtering of sounds and sound structures, and 4.) creation of individual rooms for the acoustic differentiation of single sound structures.

 

 


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