Metaxenakis pays tribute to a visionary composer through a performance


The annual Vancouver New Music Festival returns to the theater for the first time in three years. Part of a transcontinental centenary celebration of the 20th century composer Iannis XenakisMetaxenakis will offer six performances over three nights by local and international artists who have been inspired by Xenakis’ artistic and philosophical legacy.

Visionary artist, architect and philosopher, Xenakis has left an indelible mark on the arts of the 21st century. After spending his youth fighting with the Greek resistance at the end of World War II, Xenakis studied and worked with the influential Franco-Swiss architect Le Corbusier. Incorporating his architectural approaches into his music, Xenakis developed a unique sonic and compositional approach that drew heavily on mathematics, physics, pattern and the natural world.

“[His] gritty, cheerfully elemental music transformed collections of pitches, rhythms and instruments into a force of nature,” wrote Tom Service in the Guardian. Xenakis left a rich legacy that continues to influence artists and musicians around the world.

For Metaxenakis, Vancouver New Music has invited a selection of these artists, each with their own unique approach, to present works that are rooted in Xenakis’ music and ideas.

A highlight of the festival is Sirens, a live audio-visual package that maps fluctuations in economic data. Created by a Greek sound artist Novi sad and Japanese-German collaborator Ryoichi Kurokawa, digitally rendered visual formations and sound compositions fluctuate in intensity as the economic crisis unfolds. Tied to the fate of global markets, the more the economy fails (as represented by data and indices); the more the coupled sounds and visual sequences become developed and complex.

Local Favorites plastic acid orchestra collaborate with the violist Stefan Smulovitz to present Multitopes 1&2, two brand new pieces for orchestra and electronics. Their appearance also marks the debut of Smulovitz’s Mad Scientist Machine. Inspired by the way octopuses communicate with each other by changing the color and texture of their bodies, this LED lighting system is controlled by custom software that enables the transmission of musical ideas via light.

from Edmonton Jacob Audrey Taves makes its debut The Remaining Feature of Abandoned States. Channeling organizational systems that have outlived their functionality, utility, or proven ineffective in achieving their goals, Taves pushes the fractured boundaries of hardware and software as a metaphorical exploratory process, communicating in a language of errors, of buzz, crackle, feedback and found sounds. .

Specializing in an experimental audio engineering technique known as inputless mixing, Vancouver’s Sarah Gold uses large-format 1970s console touring mixers that have been routed in various ways to create full-frequency feedback tones and blips. It uses line noise cycling to create a powerful sub-bass experience that can be simultaneously heard and felt.

Using the large multi-speaker setup to sonically sculpt the performance space, Vancouver’s Giorgio Magnanensi will broadcast Xenakis Hibiki-Hana-Ma for 8 channel tape. Composed for Expo 70 in Osaka, Hibiki-Hana-Ma was created with recordings of an orchestra, biwa and snare using the UPIC system, a graphical input device invented by Xenakis.

The three-day festival culminates with an unmissable performance by the Japanese drumming virtuoso Kuniko Kato. Kato will offer the emblematic works of Xenakis for solo percussion, Psapha and ab bounces It will be a rare opportunity to hear these pieces in the hands of one of the best percussionists in the world.

The festival runs from October 21 to 23. Tickets and schedule information can be found at Vancouver New Music’s website.

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