reflections 1-2

These are the five tentative comment that describe the development of the selected root snippest “the beginning” and “screams”. Review them carefully and assign them preference points by filling the form. Leave your own reflection the grade 0.

comment: I tried, as much as I could to embrace the pluralism of our different voices. The piece starts with a modification of my first proposal (according to some overall noise based patterns that I notices in sketches of other composers). This noisy ‘leitmotiv’ is juxtaposed with unrelated material by other composers, but it keeps reoccuring. The anamorphosis/departing from a common point is present in both the twisted proportions of subsections, as well es in gradual modifications of the initial ‘leitmotivish’ sound. My goal was (but really in this short time we had impossible) to start with presenting at least one material from each composer, then shortening these bits up and slowly starting to fuse elements together. I am sorry to say that I have only managed to finish the ‘exposition’ part of my idea. What I have noticed in our sketches is the overall tendency of either writing very dark or very light sonorities, so I profited from that fact in constructing the overall dramaturgy of this excerpt.

comment: The way I see it is that the previously selected snippet’s first 4 bars are the common point that we are deviating from. As proposed by the selected comment, I tried to go away form the collage-like opening and develop more each individual material as well as tried to merge diverse compositional voices. As a next step, I could see converting the first violin into descending col legno battuto cloud and other strings following (as was proposed in ‘on the continuation of the breathy airy lines’) which would lead to a frenzy of jumping between various elements exposed so far up to a point where they are no more recognizable, and this jumping between extremes becomes a new anamorphic texture on its own (which could also be interpreted as an entry to our new section).


reflection 1

MESO-POTHAMIA: There are two possible ways that I could see this piece proceding. One would be to make the units of different material very short and plastic – almost like sound signals – and to quickly alternate between them, stopping every now an then on a single material, that then gets developed further, but sounds almost as if an LP or CD got stuck in one place. In this way we constantly balance between rapid progressions and static consolidation of our materials. Nevertheless, with each loop we get further away from our opening bars (which still coincides with the idea of departing from the common point) until we eventually get a novel material that can be considered as beginning of the next section. The other would be to really try finding good combinations of the material so far exposed, and to use that to slowly pivot into something new. In other words, we start with solutions that are clearly audible as mergers of 2 or 3 elements, but we remain in one such combination for an extended period of time, allowing it to very gradually metamorphise (don’t know if the word really exists) to something that lies on the other side of the spectrum. Since so far we have predominantly used loud, noisy and high material (with the exception of a few low scrapes) the other side of the spectrum could be some pitch oriented, softer mid-low sound.

reflection 2

Next step (meso-strucure): In “Screams” the initial gesture (“A” of “The Beginning”) has been integrated as an accompaniment element into C, which has then gradually merged into B. The snippet ends arriving at a new point “D”, with material that had not yet appeared in the selected snippets. From this point, I would suggest a very slow and structured (i.e., gradual) process of divergence. The stability of this slow transition is aimed at countering and balancing the quick oppositions that opened the piece. In this process, two instruments or voices would gradually morph into some new material – selected from the Incubation period, but which has not yet appeared in the selected fragments. The other two instruments would (also slowly) transform back into the initial material of A (Violoncello and Contrabass should necessarily go in opposite paths). In this way, we would achieve not only a transformation of material, but of formal meaning, i.e., of musical time: one voice is going onwards towards the unknown, while the other is going back to the beginning: openness versus closure, in coexisting opposition. Macro structure: The same process described above could be replicated in a following step, but with four independent strands: each instrument a voice, going a separate way. One of the instruments that had progressed towards new material would necessarily have to go back to the initial “A” material. At the end of this process, we would reach a point of maximum divergence amongst the instruments, but could construct this as an ostinato or other statically perceived material: that is, the maximum of VERTICAL VARIETY coexisting with perceived HORIZONTAL STABILITY – the opposite of the opening bars. This system could then undergo one or two forms of morphing (collectively, as one unified complex system). I would suggest first an anamorphosis, and then a metamorphosis. This would constitute the apex of the composition. From here, new discussion would be needed as to how to direct the piece towards its end.

reflection 3

I propose a macrostructure composed of different mesostructures, in which each mesostructure consists of transformations and/or hybrid mixes from two or several materials with a duration between 30 seconds – 2 minutes. Each mesostructure transforms from one to the other in transitions. From the two first selected snippets, there is enough material that can be developed. I think we should avoid the introduction of new material at this point. It has the risk at this moment of strengthening the collage character. Instead, the piece should go for a more organic approach as it was proposed in the previously selected reflection. In addition, I find that an organic structure agrees more with the concept “deviation-transformation from a common point.”

reflection 4 (selected)

With regard to the mesostructure (1-2 minutes), I would like to see the composition evolve through the alternation and organic relationship between the high-pitch, percussive pizz. and the and the granular scratches on the strings. But, it would be compositionally and sonically more engaging to focus on the durational exposition of those elements and the esoteric rhythm of their pacing rather than just expose them. For example, let’s try to work on micro-rhythmicities and meticulous articulations of, for example, fast and slow expositions of granular clouds and pay attention to the porosity and the density. In such a way we can focus on the hidden mechanisms that host the sonic material and not just to the material per se. With regard to the macrostructure, I would really like to see some har-core repetitive structures emerge out of nowhere. Like, freezing the dramaturgical time. In addition to that, it will worth exploring the glissando-like textures. that have already been proposed in the incubation phases and have been articulated to the snippets.

reflection 5

I found it very interesting that everyone has continued in a more or less same way. What I find successful and useful in the continuation of the piece, is to have an eye on the importance of how the selected snippet (Scream) was written. (1. not being a collage but being a progression of the materials and 2. transformation of the materials into it to a completely different world. – paradox effect). I find the continuation of this kind of compositional behavior is a valuable method. As a continuation, I still believe one step (whenever that happens) shall be to reconstruct the ‘beginning” snippet, it has great amount of potential to be further developed. After the screams: It would be nice to bring something less “busy”. Not everyone needs to always play something, or even if they are, it could be a very soft part focusing on 1 or 2 elements. I think the over pressure (last element in the screams snippet) can unfold itself into the aftermath snippet (reducing the cluster into one line) one line of noise and eventually introduce the breathy sounds. Or instead of the breathy sounds the falling glissandos with c.b. on strings could be something that can function here well as well.