Celebration from Evening Ritual

This is a recording of my new piece Celebration: and Mary Danced on back of the Terrapin in the Womb of the Tathagata for Voice and Max/MSP. The piece is set in a 7-limit just intonation tuning and will make up the 7-limit movement of my upcoming piece Evening Ritual for voices and electronics. The electronic sounds were created inside of Max using FM and additive synthesis, in Melodyne by retuning samples from Jesus in the Shade of the Bodhi Tree, and in the Arturia CMI fairlight.

A human vocalist triggers changes in melodic sequences played by the computer by means of a frequency follower. The vocal part is semi-improvisational. In the first section, inspired by the Alap portion of Hindustani ragas, the order of introduction of the pitches of an E-flat mixolydian collection is fixed but the melody and rhythm is entirely improvised. The sequence pattern which dominates the middle dance-like section is hinted at during the introduction. In the dance portion a series of 7 different sequences can be triggered by the vocalist. Again, their order of introduction is fixed but the melodic movement of the vocalist as well as the timing with which they chose to trigger the sequences is improvised. The piece ends in a C phrygian and the material of the singer is entirely improvised save that they must end on the pitch C.

The present recording is a stereo file but the piece is ultimately to be presented in a quadraphonic speaker setup.

Kevin Swenson – Voice

For a chart which details the ratios, the notes used to trigger changes in the patch and the scales which accompany each sequence see the PDF hosted at this link.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *