Saturday, November 19, 2016

"Dented Lodge" For Piano

"Dented Lodge"  

For Piano

Bil Smith

Commissioned from Fanuc

"A Pierre. Dell’azzurro silenzio, inquietum" Luigi Nono. The Score.

PDF Score

Dedicated to Pierre Boulez on the occasion of his 60th anniversary (on 26th March 1985), the composition A Pierre. Dell’azzurro silenzio, inquietum received its first performance on 31st March 1985 in Baden-Baden by Roberto Fabbriciani and Ciro Scarponi; the live electronics part was prepared by the Experimental Studio in Freiburg in Breisgau. 

The score was finished on 20th February 1985. The cooperation of Luigi Nono with flutists Roberto Fabbriciani and clarinettist Ciro Scarponi and their consulting in the field of instrumentation played a major role in Nono’s late output. 

The two musicians’ congenial concert performances, with the richness of harmonics of the contrabass flute and contrabass clarinet, determined the specific timbral aura of the work: it is difficult to distinguish which sounds are played by acoustic instruments and which are generated live in the electronics part. 

The composer was seeking precisely that perfect union between two types of sonority, because only then could he create that uninterrupted tissue, continuously fluctuating, characterized by an extremely subtle but insistent inner mobility. It is a sonority deployed in space and written for space, that actualizes on the threshold between sound and the “blue silence”. 

Mobility and spatiality are the two principal characteristics of the work. 

Luigi Nono did use the indication “a piú cori” on purpose in this work written for just two instruments, adopting the nomenclature of Venetian polychoral music of the Gabrielis – an indication that he used often, by the way: e.g. he called his seven instrumental groups “choirs” in 2° No hay caminos, hay que caminar… … Andrej Tarkowskij. Nono thus wrote in the short liner note to that composition:  

A few choirs ever changing  Formants of the voice – timbres –  interdynamised spaces  and some possibilities  of transformation through live electronics.  
It is the formula “a few choirs ever changing” that draws our attention. In both solo parts, whose dynamics oscillate between and ppppp with rare incursions of mezzo forte, a continuous variability of sound emission is required, from the standard technique up to a hiss, with different participation (or lack thereof) of determined pitches, sharp “Aeolian“ tones, whistles, clusters, harmonics, occasionally with the presence of an interrupted basic “shadow tone“. 
(liner notes by Paolo Petazzi, Luigi Nono e il suono  
elettronico. 10° Festival di Milano Musica,  
Teatro Studio, 9 October 2000) 

The electronic part, determining the spatial effect of the work, helps to perceive the at times incorporeally light timbre of the instruments, transforms it and reclaims it through the use of delay, making the taped sound become an element of the natural sound. 

The delay, in fact, makes the instrumental sound perceivable even after the soloist has become silent. The fusion between acoustic instruments and electronics that is the hallmark of this work is expressed in this continuity, too.  

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Composers Resources - Links of Interest (The Game Changers)

"Links of Interest" I have put together a resource list of links on my site of those individuals and blogs who truly are game changing thinkers. It's a work in progress and I am still adding to this. I will be organizing them in categories and hopefully offering a brief highlight to each. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Recording: "Neural Intervals And Barium Infused Automatons" (2014) Bil Smith Composer

Composition for Cello, Chamber Ensemble, Inverted Equilibrium Sonic Pendulum, Exocyclic Trumpet in B flat, Schilke b3l Tunable Beryllium Bell Trumpet, Elliot Easton SG Custom OHSC Electric Guitar, Zildjian 22″ C2 Gong / Cymbal, LP Galaxy Giovanni Tumbadora, Retrosium Flute and ROLI Seaboard Grand.
Roli Seaboard Grand
From the performance notes/depiction of the Inverted Equilibrium Sonic Pendulum and the Cello:
We have executed a control method for maintaining an inverted pendulum in the unstable equilibrium position. This application is a classic lesson in control science, frequently utilized in ballistic guidance. In the case of the Cello, the proportional-integral-derivative (PID) method was implemented in LabWindows and intendulum with test mass. Once optimal parameters for the algorithm were established, trials were conducted in which individual gain constants were varied while controlling string and bow pressure to observe changes in instrument behavior.
When applying bow pressure, vector fields can have several special points: a stable point, called a sink, that attracts in all directions (forcing the concentrations to be at a certain value), an unstable point, either a source or a saddle point which repels (forcing the concentrations to change away from a certain value), and a limit cycle, a closed trajectory towards which several trajectories spiral towards (making the concentrations oscillate).
Repostulate in a alternative tablature system; topological models of morphogenesis.
Recording on SoundCloud:

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

"South of the Central Lagoon Which Contained The Planetarium". Premiere Performance, Art Basel Miami, December 8, 2013.

"South of the Central Lagoon Which Contained The Planetarium" 

for Strings, Chamber Orchestra, Piano, Live Electronics.

The following were administered to select performers based on an algorithm partially formulated using Smale's Eleventh Problem:

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Adderall, Straterra, Vyvanse, Paraldehyde and Xanax. 


Bil Smith Composer.

Premiere Performance, Art Basel Miami, 

December 8, 2013.

Inxiole 15.173700000171818729" from the Compaction Series

Inxiole 15.173700000171818729" from the Compaction Series

Listen On Soundcloud

The Four Dunnett's.

The Four Custom Made Ron Dunnett Snare Drums at Laboratorie New Music

A New Series of Compositions for Four Dunnett Snare Drums. 

Instrument Acquisition, Compositions and Performances Courtesy of Anadarko Petroleum

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

"Substrate Sanctuary" for Orchestra, Choir, and Tape

"Substrate Sanctuary" for Orchestra, Choir, and Tape (2013) - Bil Smith Composer


"...on the other hand Smith's work is ruminative, contemplative, and perhaps a touch melancholic, possessing what one might call sonic ambivalence.

His bold yet delicate orchestration and the elegance of his post-complexity gesture arise from his conviction that a text score's narrative power lies in its ability to reach the bone of an idea by flensing off excess flesh and fat.

He believes in disturbing those complacent conventions of narrative sprawl that serve to muddle the craft of compositional notation.

He does not indulge in leaps of imagination for their own sake, but aspires to create a fictional realm that was recognizably continuous with observed reality, of a piece with the actual world in which the work resides and performs its historical argument."

Mike Barnes - "The Guardian"