New and Used Furniture Music

1st performance: Open Ears Festival, Kitchener, Ont., 2003.

A multi-media sound performance using a midi-interactive theremin to control midi-mechanised thunder sheets, long piano strings, and amplified water drops.

The performer plays a midi-interactive theremin, causing a progressive series of Max programs to play various mechanised sound sculptures. Long piano wires are divided into resonant sections that are played by midi-controlled solenoids. A collection of amplified household objects are played by midi-controlled water drops, and several suspended thunder sheets are resonated by variable speed motors. Other long strings are activated by pneumatic air cylinder and off-balance motor.

The physical parameters of the sound installation are defined by the architectural space of the performance location. The resulting sounds activate the natural resonant frequencies of the space. The installation is structurally self-reflective in sound and space, and makes specific references to social and consumerist musical ideas through interpsersed quotes from Jerry Hunt, Bill Viola, and Mickey McGowan.

Live video projection is used as a backdrop to show the close-up movements and actions that create the mechanical sounds.

©Gordon Monahan 2003

photos by York Wegerhoff

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