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Mother piece (acousmatic music)

by Ian Fredericks

Audio Sample

From the CD Sunrise



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Sunrise / the acousmatic music of Ian Fredericks.

Library shelf no. CD 2836 [Available for loan]


Out of Print

This item is out-of-print. We regret that it cannot be purchased from the Australian Music Centre.



Library shelf no. CD 272 [Available for loan]

Work Overview

Simulation of moving sound-sources is one of the important compositional elements in Mother Piece. I had to build some electronic devices especially for the work. All the sound-manipulation was done using a plethora of multi-track tape recorders and the initial master was done in four channels. The two-channel reduction presented here was mixed from an original eight-track master. Much of the spatial movement is lost but I think there is enough of the sensation of space to preserve the compositional intent. Three types of sounds are used: the female voice (as the most natural and human sound of all); sine tones (the most unnatural and inhuman sound of all) and percussion sounds, which serve as a bridge between the human and the inhuman. Overall the piece is a progression from the naturalness of the female voice to the harsh 'supra-reality' of industrial synthesized sound.
The female voice was kindly supplied by Jenny Tebbut. The sounds she sang all came from the [phonemes] of the word 'mother'. The sine tones were all generated using a high-precision scientific instrument (a wave-form generator). The percussion sounds were derived from cymbals, a drum, crotales, and a set of small brass bells [all played by the composer]. {Ian Fredericks, 1995}

Work Details

Duration: 16 min.

Commission note: Commissioned with funds provided by Australia Council. Music Board.. Commissioned by the Music Dept at the University of Sydney

Composed 1978-1979.

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