CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Feb. 2, 2001
Concert of electronic music will include recent compositions
by UI students Feb. 16
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Electronic Music Studios of
the University of Iowa School of Music will present a concert of new works,
including compositions by UI students at 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 16 in Clapp Recital
Hall on the UI campus. The performance will be free and open to the public.
The works by UI students on the program will be: "Segment-09"
and "Invisible Pathways" by masters degree student Christopher
D. Brakel; "Sammic Tort" by Timothy Fischer, an undergraduate working
toward an interdepartmental degree in sound production; "a well devised
trap" by undergraduate John Ritz; "Crim" by graduate student
Erin Gee; "Pernicious Infinities" by masters student Matt
Groves; and "Disquiet Meditation" by masters student Michael
Also featured on the program will be "UnfoldEntwine"
by Diane Thome, who is chair of the composition program in the School of Music
of the University of Washington.
The composer of a wide variety of works, including
solo, chamber, choral, orchestral and electronic media, Thome was the first
woman to write computer-synthesized music. Her compositions have been presented
in Europe, China, Australia, Israel, Canada and throughout the United States.
She has been featured on French radio and served as composer-in-residence
at the University of Sussex and the Bennington Chamber Music Conference and
Composers Forum of the East.
Recent awards include 1994 Washington Composer of
the Year, 1995-6 Solomon Katz Distinguished Professor in the Humanities, and
a 1998 International Computer Music Conference Commission. Her music has been
recorded on the CRI, Crystal Records, Opus One, Capstone and Centaur labels,
including "Palaces of Memory," an 18-year retrospective of her electro-acoustic
music on the Centaur label.
Thome wrote of "UnfoldEntwine," "Music
for me is often connected with visual, spatial and kinetic experience. It
was with this awareness that I began to conceive of this work as a mysterious,
slowly-unfolding journey with an astonishing, even magical, destination that
would appear much later in the compositional narrative.
"The single stream of sound which opens the piece
ultimately devolves, after a series of briefer digressions, into a realm of
multiple, concurrent tributaries. The process of unfolding, disclosing, interleaving
and entwining which characterize the architecture of the work also suggest
"Segment-09," a computer-generated landscape,
was composed in the fall of 2000 in the
UI Electronic Music Studios (EMS). The sound material used is derived from
three distinct sources: 1) a harpsichord cluster-chord; 2) water dripping;
and 3) a high-pitched synthesized sound event.
"Invisible Pathways" was composed in January
as an exploration of the abstract associations created in memory among different
types of music. The sound material was derived from sampled music from various
non-Western cultures, including improvisations on a Turkish drum and Tibetan
"throat singing," Australian Aborigine music and music from Azerbaijan.
"Sammic Tort" is made up of bits and pieces
of sound taken from a large variety of commercial music. The samples, ranging
from blips to small loops, are arranged in a constant construction and destruction
of rhythm and melody. The piece is named after the first three samples of
sound that start the piece: Sammy Davis Jr., Michael Paradinas and Tortoise.
"Pernicious Infinities" was Groves
first foray into electronic composition. The sound sources were electronically
generated sounds and a single note, low C on a bass clarinet.
"Disquiet Meditation" was written in response
to Mauricio Lasanskys "Nazi Drawings."
It was performed in the UI Museum of Art last spring, on the occasion of the
premiere of Lane Wyricks award-winning documentary film about the drawings.
The EMS have been part of the composition program
at the UI School of Music for more than 30 years. By offering a traditional
emphasis on the compositional aspects of electronic media, the studios have
helped prepare Iowas graduates for composing, research and teaching
careers at colleges and universities throughout the United States.
Director Lawrence Fritts has brought the latest generation
of technologies to the studios. Students and faculty now have access to three
multiple-platform workstations that integrate SGI, Kyma, and Macintosh digital
Carefully maintained Moog, Arp and EMS analog synthesizers,
along with other analog processing and control devices from the past 30 years,
have also been integrated into the new systems to ensure that UI composers
have the broadest possible range of technologies available as compositional
Fritts is a leading figure in electronic and acousmatic
music. His works have been performed in Chicago by the Contemporary Chamber
Players, the University of Chicago New Music Ensemble, New Music De Paul and
New Music Chicago. His electronic works have also been featured in a series
of concerts at Columbia College and have been broadcast in the United States
He has been interviewed on National Public Radio and the Canadian Broadcasting
Company about the history of electronic music.
The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing
Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts.
For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/.
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