Meaning Machines - Programme

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Meaning Machines - Programme

Text of Meaning Machines - Programme

  • A un




    RT O

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  • Meaning Machines - Programme

    Machinic Intro

    Solo 2 - Chris Stubbs [10]Trish Elphinstone, Dan Goren, John Grieve, Paul Medley

    Location composite #1: Portbury Wharf - James Saunders [9]BeezArts Trio (Bruno Guastalla, Eric Clarke, Sarah Verney-Caird)

    SOL - Guido D Arezzo, BeezArts Trio [9]BeezArts Trio (Bruno Guastalla, Eric Clarke, Sarah Verney-Caird)

    Falling Stars - Dan Goren [12]Oxford Improvisers Orchestra

    The Thickness of Things (2) - Patrick Farmer [12]The Set Ensemble (Bruno Guastalla, Sarah Hughes, David Stent)

    Machinic Interval

    Airtime - Jill Elliott [15]Oxford Improvisers Orchestra

    Love Songs of the Jazz Age - Paul Medley [4]John Grieve, Paul Medley, Anne Ryan

    For Four - Dominic Lash [10]The Set Ensemble ( Jill Elliott, Bruno Guastalla, Sarah Hughes, David Stent)

    The Rhetorical Essence of Goatsong - Malcolm Atkins [15]Oxford Improvisers Orchestra (conducted by Pat Thomas)

    Machinic Outro

  • Solo 2(Dedicated to the memory of Barry Anderson)

    Chris Stubbs

    The idea for Solo 2 is derived from Solo, a piece by Karlheinz Stockhausen that uses one solo player and a series of playbacks, or delays, allowing sound layers to build up. Rather than through the precision of a tape head or electronic delay, here the playback is achieved through improvising musicians. The first player improvises then subsequent players are asked to reproduce what the person adjacent to them has played, all filtered through the medium of their musical experience as an improvising musician. The added difficulty is that the players not only have to playback but must also record or listen to the present output.

    The text material on the following page is derived from descriptions of the original Solo.

  • Location composite #1: Portbury Wharf (2011- )

    James Saunders (first performance)

    Use these descriptions as instructions for making sounds. Descriptions may be realised by any number of performers, using any sound sources, and for any duration. Any distribution of the descriptions amongst the performers may be made. Descriptions may be used more than once in a realisation.

    constantrhythmichammersound constanttwittering gentlecrashingandlappingintermittentlybrushing forcefully pulsinglikeafingeronabuzzer low-pitcheddistantmonotonoushumcombinedwith white noise sound that goes and comes in a regular rhythm now and then a high-pitched whistle in irregular intervals louddroning,constantsoundcomingfromthenorth

    All descriptions relate to sounds heard at Portbury Wharf nature reserve, and were provided by geocachers who found GC2VJAH. For more information on Geocaching(*), visit

    The instructions for the activity were: sit quietly for a short period of time and listen on one of the sheets, describe one particular sound that you can hear with as much detail as you can do not include the source of the sound in your description, only how it sounds the source should be ambiguous to the reader Some descriptions were edited slightly to remove references to source sounds, but are otherwise unchanged.

    Descriptions kindly provided by: alan g, Captain Gore-tex, exetermonkeys and HarryHund, pajoguwo, and The Humdingers.

    (*) Geocaching is a real-world outdoor treasure hunting game. Players try to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, using GPS-enabled devices and then share their experiences online.

  • SOL

    Guido D Arezzo (c. 1020), BeezArts Trio

    Notes: Today is the summer solstice.

    Mid-13th Century, from O.Fr. solstice, from L. solstitium point at which the sun seems to stand still, from sol sun + pp. stem of sistere to come to a stop, make stand still.

    Sol is also the fifth degree of a scale. The naming of the steps by the seminal theoretician Guido dArezzo in the 11th Century came with his noticing in the hymn below, that each new phrase starts on the next step from the previous one.

    It is still in use today - although with a few modifications, and within a very different outlook on theory of music - mostly in Romance language speaking areas, as well as in the SOLFA pedagogical framework. Ut queant laxis resonare fibris, Mira gestorum famuli tuorum, Solve polluti labii reatum, Sancte Iohannes.

    It may be translated: So that your servants may, with loosened voices, resound the wonders of your deeds, clean the guilt from our stained lips, O Saint John.

  • Falling Stars

    Dan Goren

    The poem Falling Stars by Maggie Goren was written for a choral composition by composer Dan Goren in 2006 for The Sixteen. Dan has returned to to the poem for a new and radically different interpretation. After a recitation of the poem itself the musicians respond to an audio score - a temporal arrangement of the poems text which the performers will hear through earphones. Each musician has an individually arranged setting of the text to which they respond by improvised word painting, together forming a collective image.

    The form of this work aims at a particular balance. It draws on each improvisers skills, sensibilities and imagination whilst providing just the right level of structure to evoke the magicial and thought-provoking world conjured by poem. Word painting is a fundamental technique with a history as broad as it is long and improvisation an ideal medium for it; speaking as it does with the plurality and individuality of experience at the heart of so much contemporary culture and thinking.

  • The Thickness of Things (2) Oxford, 12.06.11.

    Patrick Farmer

    For Bruno, David and Sarah. For three.

    a silence in accordance to what is imagined. not one or two starting without an or other. not one or two leaving without an or other.

    pre - place | short periods. with in - with out | short periods. to do - so do | short periods. starting - leaving

  • For Meaning Machines

    John Grieve

    New product from in association with

  • Airtime (for voices and wind soloists)

    Jill Elliott

    Airtime is one of a number of pieces in which I have attempted to create, control and structure musical effects by means other than conventionally musical instructions. In this case, words are used to create rhythm and texture in a piece which draws on elements of nonsense and theatre.

    In Airtime, a group of vocalists interrupt and articulate the stream of air needed to produce vocal sound, using the phonemes of the word time; t, ai and m. These are arranged into semi-nonsensical phrases and annotated with stage directions. Complex rhythmic patterns and microtonal melodies arise without the need for a detailed musical score. Phrases such as I might tie my tight Thai tie and My, my!, whilst selected for their musical effect, nonetheless suggest some sort of zany narrative which encompasses moments of exuberance, weariness and musings on the future.

    A small group of wind instruments, improvising within loose guidelines, comment on and develop the material presented by the vocalists and provide them with breathing space.

    In its current version, Airtime suffers from the limitations imposed by a script in English, with English stage directions. More widespread performance would necessitate a more complex musical score.

  • Love Songs From the Jazz Age

    Paul Medley

  • For Four

    Dominic Lash

    I every 10 seconds identical

    II every 25 seconds converging

    III every 40 seconds diverging

    IV every 55 seconds unique

    from one minute to one hour

    Falmouth, MA 9/3/11

  • The Rhetorical Essence of Goat Song

    Malcolm Atkins

    This piece presents a summation of the basic structural forms of Greek Tragedy using vocal conduction. As tragedy itself seems to have evolved from improvised song this seems entirely appropriate.

    Disparate words are used such that meaning is given through method of delivery rather than through formal language. Each participant supplies their own text.

    1 or 2 Prologos Worry a bit

    All Chorus/Parodos Be positive 1 Rhesis State arrogant position All Chorus Be concerned and think of mortality 2 Agon Argue a lot

    Stichomythia And even more All Chorus/Kommos Be depressed 1 or 2 Exodus Be patronising

  • Contributors

    Malcolm AtkinsEric Clarke

    Miles DoubledayJill Elliott

    Trish ElphinstonePatrick FarmerJulian Faultless

    Dan GorenJohn Grieve

    Bruno GuastallaLiz HodgsonSarah HughesJohn JobbagyDominic Lash

    Anne MackintoshEmily Marshall

    Paul MedleyAnne RyanFran Ryan

    James SaundersDavid StentChris StubbsPat Thomas

    Sarah Verney-Caird