Into Movements

in Compositions

Into Movements - Top Line

May – October 2007. For piano and motion sensors. Premiered at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival 2007, performed by Sarah Nicolls .

Composed for, and in collaboration with Sarah Nicolls, Into Movements takes as its point of departure movements of the pianist’s hands.

When we stare at a landscape for long enough, we begin to stop seeing the static, and become more aware of changes – when something tiny moves, such as a small bird in the distance, our attention is immediately drawn to it. Into Movements explores this concept aurally. The simple harmonic progressions, the repetitive chords and the slow high-pitched melody were all designed to highlight the pianist’s movements.

Whether a gentle oscillation of the hands whilst holding down a chord, or the sudden jump from a low-pitched chord to a higher-pitched chord, the sensors attached to the hands of the performer affect the electronic sounds, or rather modify the natural sound of the piano. For the electronic sounds were conceived to blend imperceptibly with the acoustic sound of the piano forming a new ‘hyperpiano’, thanks in part to miniature speakers placed inside the instrument.

In another section, the performer is able to ‘re-perform’ pre-recorded sounds taken from the inside of the piano – scraping strings, tapping the soundboard and strumming – at the same time as playing the keys conventionally.

An excerpt of Into Movements was performed by Sarah Nicolls on BBC Radio 3’s In Tune programme.

Another excerpt from BMIC Cutting Edge Tour…

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