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Halcyon | austraLYSIS : From Afar...


Halcyon | austraLYSIS : From Afar...

  • Date: Saturday, 24 November 2012, 8pm
  • Venue: Music Workshop, Sydney Conservatorium of Music — Cnr Macquarie St and Bridge St, Sydney, NSW
  • Series: This event is part of the New Music Network 2012 series
  • Tickets: Full $30 / Concession $20 — Tickets can be purchased online or by phone on (02) 8256 2222

Event Details

In this welcome reunion of singers and sound artists, Halcyon and austraLYSIS continue their scintillating encounters in voice and electroacoustics, this time joined by freelance sound artist and composer Jon Drummond.

Originally the soundtrack to a film, Xenakis's Orient-Occident was composed in 1960 as music for a film by Enrico Fulchignoni which depicted sculptures and objects from cultures around the world over a vast span of history, and accompanied a UNESCO exhibition in Paris with the same theme. Musically, there are quotations from Xenakis’ earlier PH Concret, using fire crackle sounds, and there is a sense of the granulation techniques he was about to pioneer and promote.

Utilising a range of percussive sounds including tam-tam, bowed metal-tones, water-drops, and bird-like and sliding tones, Xenakis plays with repetitive structures and 'industrial' overtones, which have recurred in a whole movement of electronic dance/club music since the 1990s. Roger Dean says of this work, "when one thinks back to the tedious and slow technologies available at the time, such as repeated playback of tape at varying speeds, physical cutting and splicing,playing tapes across multiple tape heads to create reverb, one can appreciate the huge effort required in making Xenakis’ classic electroacoustic pieces of this era."

Saariaho’s Lonh teams amplified soprano with prepared soundscape to explore unrequited chivalric love. The title Lonh, meaning far away or distant, comes from the old Provençal language, in which the text is sung. The text itself, a poem about love from afar, famous among scholars of mediaeval poetry, is attributed to the mediaeval troubadour Jaufré Rudel. Lonh is a prologue for Saariaho's opera projects dedicated to soprano Dawn Upshaw.

Roger Dean’s new work, Akurra, uses pre-recorded and live electronics to summon  the imagined afterlives of Akurra, the creators of Wilpena Pound (Ikara) in the Flinders Ranges of South Australia, a great isolated valley almost completely surrounded by two mountain ranges. Where did they next appear after the pound was made? The two singers use dislocated speech-sounds to describe and illustrate their post-history in the context of changing climates and the imagined creation scenario.

Taking inspiration from the Chinese classic text the I Ching, Drummond’s Book of Changes casts a unique mosaic of graphic score fragments for each performance. These score objects are combined with textural shards and live computer sound processing of the singers’ performance to create a dynamic, interwoven tapestry of acoustic and electroacoustic sound. Book of Changes is created using a network of computers exploring the use of screen as score.

Featured non-Australian music: Xenakis, Saariaho

Further information for this event is available online at the event's website or by phone on (02) 8256 2222 or by email to nmn@newmusicnetwork.com.au

Featured Australian Works

Akurra: Lives in a New World by Roger Dean — World premiere
— performed by Halcyon and austraLYSIS
Book of Changes III by Jon Drummond — World premiere
— performed by Halcyon and austraLYSIS

Featured artists

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