Graphic Notation

  • untitled graphic notationuntitled graphic notation for a 15 minute sound composition in 3 movements
  • Thunderscoregraphic notation for a 30 minute sound composition in 3 movements
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I use graphic notation to represent sounds, not as a composer specifying the way they want a piece to be played, but because I am interested in the dialog the act of interpretation establishes between image and sound. I prefer spontaneous forms of music where sound is born from performers responding to one and other or to an idea in the moment, but I believe there must be some guiding structure to that process. Therefore I make drawings, multimedia collages which present the performer and the audience with something more open, more abstract – an outline for the structure of the piece.  I aim to create an object which opens a space for the creative act.  Within that structure I want each performer to know when to begin to freely interpret the marks on the page, expressing his or her unique voice, and also to know when to stop.

Sound and space mutually produce and define each other. Beyond pitch and modulation, sounds have a quality that is the result of the context in which they are made. I always take this into consideration. When I compose an image, I think of sound, and vice versa.  I want to give dimension to the image so that the player may later give dimension to the sound.  I often contextualize more expressive mark making within minimal graphic representations of space to hint at the size shape and materiality of that gesture’s container. Clapping my hands inside the coat closet will sound very different than clapping them in the white marble grandure of the Taj Mahal.