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Title : 8 - Part Choir For Birds (2013)
Description : '8-part Choir For Birds' (November 2013)

The piece „8-part Choir For Birds“ is a conceptual work of music rooting in a Musique concrète tradition. It consists of eight individual cassette tape loops of bird song with an estimated loop duration of 4-5 seconds featuring distinct excerpts of two bass voices and six other drumming bird voices. All loops are being played on “Walkman” tape players and are controlled, arranged and stereo-panned with an 8-track Tascam mixing desk in real time.

„8-part Choir For Birds“ represents the engagement of bird songs from North- and South America and Iceland with an 8-part church choir taking particular inspiration from the first traditions of the Vienna boys choir, a choir that was firstly established with one singing master, two basses and six boys to perform only for church mass, private concerts and amongst other exclusive performances for state occasions.

The piece is an attempt to translate and interpret eight human voices into the realm of nature. It is an interpretation that discusses the conception and perception of a church choir and looks at which other choral forms are possible, placing this into a new context and setting.

The juxtapositions of harmonic/melodic and rhythmical/discordant “voices” to a rehearsed performance and an improvisation form the basis of the piece, while maintaining the fundamental outline of a traditional church choir. To accomplish this, the songs being used have not been manipulated or effected so that the purest “collaboration” of each voice with another is heard.

The two bass voices are represented by the Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus) and Spruce Grouse (Falcipennis canadensis canadensis), with the Yungas Screech Owl (Megascops hoyi), Yellow Rail (Coturnicops noveboracensis noveboracensis), Red-naped Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus nuchalis), Williamson's Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus thyroideus), Common Snipe (Gallinago gallinago), Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus red-shafted) building the foundation for the voices of the six boys.

To realistically reenact a performing church choir the two-minute long utterly improvised chorus was recorded in St. Paul's church in Berlin, Wedding on November 13th, 2013 as a stereo recording using two condenser microphones, eight tape recorders and cassette loops, Tascam 8-track mixing desk, a Marantz preamp, a digital interface and Telefunken speakers. The recording software was Logic 9.
It was performed with the speakers placed on the altar and the performer kneeling in front it.
Size : 21.9MB
Duration : 02:10
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