AMALUDUS (1995) incorporates and extends a realization of the Musical Dice Game, a set of material and rules by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791) for the spontaneous automated composition of short waltzes. AMALUDUS (Latin for "love of the game") consists of two computer programs named WÜRFELGANG and AUTOBUSK, running simultaneously and continuously over a period of time, repeatedly composing a fresh waltz a minute in real time, the former program sending its output to a player piano, the latter to a synthesizer.
Its name a reference to "Wolfgang" and consisting of the German words "Würfel", meaning dice, and "Gang", meaning "run" or "course", WÜRFELGANG plays the piano according to Mozart's instructions: for each of the 16 measures of the waltz to be composed, Mozart offers 11 (the number of ways in which two dice can be cast) pre-written alternatives, of which one is picked at random. This particular realization is based on a statistical analysis of Mozart's musical material based on a method devised by and named after the mathematician Andrei Andreievich Markov (1856–1922). Controlled by the so-called Markov order, which repeatedly descends from 5 to 1, the resynthesis ranges from a practically faithful rendition of Mozart's music through "a bit odd but resembling Mozart" to "comically dilletantish".
At the synthesizer, AUTOBUSK provides an accompaniment adopting the stylistic characteristics of Mozart's material. When WÜRFELGANG's Markov order is high, AUTOBUSK is heard to be well-behaved. However, when the Markov order falls, AUTOBUSK becomes increasingly prone to unpredictably wild outbursts.
Professor Clarence Barlow is the Corwin Endowed Chair of Composition in UCSB's Music Department. His past and current teaching posts include twelve years as Professor of Composition and Computer Music at the renowned biennial Summer Courses of the International Music Institute at Darmstadt (1982-1994); over twenty years as Lecturer in Computer Music at the Cologne Musikhochschule (1984-2005); four years as Artistic Director of the Institute of Sonology at The Hague 's Royal Conservatory (1990-1994); and twelve years as Professor of Composition and Sonology at the Royal Conservatory (1994-2006). Barlow, who studied composition under Bernd Alois Zimmermann (1968-1970) and Karlheinz Stockhausen (1971-1973), is a universally acknowledged pioneer and celebrated composer in the field of electroacoustic and computer music. He has made groundbreaking advancements in interdisciplinary composition that unite mathematics, computer science, visual arts, and literature. While he has been a driving force in interdisciplinary and technological advances, his music is nevertheless firmly grounded in tradition and thus incorporates much inherited from the past.
A site-specific multi-media installation work collaboratively conceived and executed by writers, artists, and composers in the College of Creative Studies. The installation and associated performance on May 2 will feature the work of Jesse Aumiller, Kimmy Helling, Cora Hirashiki, Matt Hubert, Alysia James, Melyssa Jewell, Emil Margolis, Jess Riegel, Mitch Shira, and Scott Tooby.
Choreographer Valerie Huston began her training in the San Francisco Bay Area with Olga Ziceva, the Christensens of the San Francisco Ballet School, Robert and Carol Hanlin, and Alan Howard. She holds a BFA from the University of Utah and is the recipient of three National Endowment Fellowships in choreography. From 1976-1985 she directed the Valerie Huston Dance Theatre, a ten-member professional contemporary ballet touring company based in Santa Barbara. From 1977-1985, this company toured extensively throughout the western states and was funded by the National Endowment for the Arts for five consecutive years. The company also participated in the Children's Creative Project, and serviced over 6,000 elementary school children per year with movement classes and performances. That program, under the direction of Ms. Huston, received special commendations from the NEA and became a model program for other cities. In 1983 Valerie joined the faculty at UCSB. She has also been a guest instructor at the University of Hawaii, the Fifth International Dance Festival in Hong Kong, and has served as an adjudicator for the Southeast Regional Ballet Festival. She was awarded an Independent Artist Award for Choreography in 1995 by the Arts Fund in Santa Barbara and in 1999 the Lifetime Achievement Award in Dance from Santa Barbara Dance Alliance. In addition to her position at UCSB, she teaches at the Santa Barbara Ballet Center and serves as an advisor to the Santa Barbara Festival Ballet Board of Directors.
Leslie A. Hogan studied composition at the University of Kansas, the University of Michigan, the Sandpoint Festival, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, and the Bloch Composers' Symposium. She worked principally with Leslie Bassett and William Albright. Her music increasingly reflects a longtime fascination with other art forms and with the potential of music to reflect or respond to visual stimuli from the natural world, resulting in works such as Flight (1997), String Quartet #3: Dolphin (1996), Sonata for alto saxophone and piano: 'Thoughts that fit like air' (2000), and Praise (1992), an orchestral work based on some poetry of Robert Hass. Recent works include Sonata for violoncello and piano (2002), written for Virginia Kron, Questions of Travel (2003), a setting of the Elizabeth Bishop poem for mezzo-soprano and large chamber ensemble, and Splinter of Hope (2004) and Matisse (2005) for solo cello.
In 1999, she co-founded Current Sounds, a new music consortium based in Santa Barbara, California, and also serves on the board of the Chamber Music Society of Santa Barbara, an organization which promotes the performance and appreciation of chamber music repertory through sponsoring workshops, concerts, and outreach activities. She has received awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Charles Ives Fellowship, 2002; Charles Ives Scholarship, 1993), the American Music Center, ASCAP, and the Chicago Civic Orchestra, among others. Dr. Hogan has taught composition in the College of Creative Studies since 1995.
Following the ECM concert on Wednesday, April 23, Christopher Jette and James Orsher will create a site specific installation in the Storke Plaza based on the text "The Trojan Women" by Euripides. The space will be activated by a large chorus, the members of which will individually recite a portion of the text. Overlaid, Jette and Orsher will sonify dialogue through typing procedures.
Christopher Jette graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1998 with a B.A. in violin performance. He received his M.M. in music composition from the New England Conservatory in 2005 and began a Ph.D. in composition at UCSB in 2006.
The act of human perception is central to all of Christopher's works. This has manifest in the investigation of cognitive apparatus of perception. The result of this interest is works that seek to explore the idea of music not simply as sounds, but as sounds that are experienced by humans. The emphasis on experience has led to an interest in organizing concert events. The other component of this interest is that many of Christopher's compositions are created specifically for individual performers. This is a testament not only to the aesthetic bond that is formed, but also to the molding of pieces to the physical, mental and aesthetic abilities of the performer(s) involved.
James Orsher is a composer, performer and curator. Many of his works derive their content and material from found sources and chance procedures. He particularly enjoys cooking, borders and intersections, the process of getting to know a place, and short text scores. He studied at CalArts with Michael Pisaro, Stephen "Lucky" Mosko and Sara Roberts, and Amherst College with Lewis Spratlan. He currently purses doctoral studies with Clarence Barlow at UCSB.
A show-reel of works mentored and curated by Graham Wakefield in the UCSB College of Creative Studies, featuring original music, video, stop-motion and computer-assisted animation by Alexis Crawshaw, Alex Graniere, Bobby Halvorson, Alysia James, Zachary Koretz, Cynthia Simonian, Rebecca Redman, Drew Reed and Ian Wallace.
Graham Wakefield is a composer, media artist and technologist with research foci in generative systems for electronic music and animation. He is currently a Ph.D. student of Media Arts and Technology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Graham attained an Master of Science in Media Arts and Technology at the University of California, Santa Barbara USA, a Master in Composition from Goldsmiths College, University of London UK, and a Bachelors in Philosophy from the University of Warwick UK. His compositions and installations have been performed in the UK and USA, and he has a number of publications regarding algorithmic composition, virtual environments and sound spatialization. For more information: his website.