spin : for cello and recorded sounds
by Douglas Knehans (1995)
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Library shelf no. Q 787.4/KNE 1 [Available for loan]
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spin was conceived as an interactive piece of sorts. Although the electronic sounds are fixed and pre-recorded, unlike most pre-recorded electronic works the performer is allowed to set the tempo of each section from within a limited range of four different tempi. This is simply achieved through recording the electronics in a variety of tempi then assigning each tempo for each section a different index number on the compact disc. So, while a performer may like the slowest tempo for section one, a slightly faster tempo may feel better for a subsequent section. Just as one may program the order of tracks on a commercial compact disc, so too can the performer program the order of tracks on the accompanying disc to this work, each section having four representative tracks each of a different tempo.
The image of spinning discs was also a compositional impulse for the piece. A collection of discreet gestures recycles through the work as it unfolds, each spinning its own web of relations both with itself and with its context. The performer completes this aspect of spinning relationships as s/he selects the tempo for each section and so puts an interpretive "spin" on the music.
Instrumentation: Solo acoustic cello, recorded sounds on CD.
Duration: 9 min.
Difficulty: Advanced — Extremely virtuosic. Some extended techniques required.
Dedication note: Dedicated to Madeleine Shapiro
Written for: Madeleine Shapiro
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