Annie Gosfield over gender & composing

Componiste Annie Gosfield schreef > een uitvoerig artikel in de New York Times over het – in Nederland wellicht niet zo sterk als in de VS – veelbediscussieerde onderwerp “De Vrouwelijke Componist(e)”. De moeite waard. Hieronder een deel van een werk van Gosfield, uitgevoerd tijdens de Muziekweek 2012.

Composed by Annie Gosfield
Performed by Monica Germino at Tivoli, Utrecht, NL

Part of a larger project dedicated to jammed radio signals in WWII
This video starts about one minute into the piece. (Edited because of extraneous noise)
Live sound by Frank van der Weij
Video edited by Aad van Nieuwkerk for VPRO
“Long Waves and Random Pulses” is a duet for violin and jammed radio signals. I composed and researched the piece at the American Academy in Berlin, using original recordings of jamming sounds that were used to block radio transmissions in Italy, Germany, and the Soviet Union in World War II. The violin merges and emerges, shifting from music, to noise, to pure signal while fading in and out of the sounds of intentional radio interference. The electronic backing track includes a repeated six-note figure that was drawn from original recordings of an Italian radio jamming device, a buzzing pitched pulse from a German jamming device, a quote from J. S. Bach’s Chaconne in D Minor as it could have been heard in a jammed broadcast, and many extended techniques that evoke the sounds of these otherworldly radio signals. The violin part alternates between virtuosic and textural playing, shifting between notes and noise, custom made for Monica’s great technique and dramatic performance skills. I considered the way a listener might perceive these unpredictable shifting sounds when he or she turned on the radio and was confronted with the odd results of two very different signals competing for the same wavelength, as well as the constant transformation and the dynamic tension between noise, interference, and pure signal. As for the title, “Long Waves” refers to the long wave radio frequencies that many of these interrupted signals were broadcast on. “Random Pulses” represents a method of radio jamming that uses a random pulse noise to override the program broadcast on the target radio frequency. -Annie Gosfield
Commissioned by the Gaudeamus Foundation
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