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  A new project is due ...or not ?  ruska02 at 02:08 on 02 August 2008

First there was the breaking down the historical walls of the tonal traditional system with twelve-tone systhem and serialism. The analog and after the digital electronic media outburst modified all basic aspect of sound and space.
While a whole new family brand of performers was brought into life: the electronic interpreters; notation was non any more sufficient to express all the necessities of the new scores that became more and more detailed ; composer after composer started writing book long "legendas" to be "understood" by the probable performers. Everyone started to get lost. “The map was no longer the territory”. It was time for a change simply because contemporary music was not a musical thing anymore but simply a rational and often irrational exercise. It was in the beginning of the 80’, and young enlighten composer named Giresy stated : "If we will not learn to play with sound, sound itself will play with us”. Since the Spectral Movement pointed out some basic aims an incredibly wide new knowledge has been brought forth in these recent years, but many composers and performers seem not to have understood its real weight yet.
But the real results: scores, are still slowly to be written, sound ,appear and be spread in a new convincing way. As far as I did not ever liked those concerts in which other composers and close relatives listen to the music of their favorites; with a not easy to heal suffer, I deeply questioned my writing. After a period of inside questioning, even if I was at a quite successful point having won some International Prizes and having gained fame in my area, I stopped writing contemporary music at all. At the same time having been interested from the other culture musical expressions as Jazz or Indian classical music, pop and dance I realized some interesting common no way out roads and clues. I then asked myself some basic questions especially approaching the turn of the millennium, according to me a new way of thinking music was awaited to appear and reveal itself. " What did I really like when I was listening to music? " I easily made a list of composers from Gesualdo to Ligeti who where fine to my hears and soul. I started looking from a different point of view , and searching for common aspects that could have enabled me to outline some basic “rules” of long listing values. But I realized there was a damage done beside what I could ever understand and be able to write. A lot of people and performers were still living in bad recollections from the past, and were "afraid" of contemporary music. According to many of them composers did not care about who was listening, if not even about who was playing. They were and are somehow right!
Now a new project is due. A research capable of collecting some basic stable points and to translating them into useful suggestion for “people who write with the ears and the soul in mind” and respect audience and performers.
I think we should strive my attention on what listeners perceive because what they perceive is dependent to a large degree on their previous experience. This means that higher levels of the organization of music (relationships over long time span) are something that is reconstructed by listeners according to their experience, influenced along lines laid down by the musician who created it. I look forward contributions by anyone who has worked on the control of the relative segmentation or continuity of musical patterns aware that it is the primary way in which music makes its way and is made to be dynamic and pushes forward time.

Roberto Composer

  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  Jim Tribble at 02:18 on 03 August 2008

Hi Roberto, despite some of your past contributions to my blog. I think that we are thinking about the same thing. It is just that my solution in your eyes was a non starter, namely tonalism.

I have experimented with and still write music that reflex my more complex head space, but the music is too wild for most of the people that I have played it too. They do not have the reference points for it, and it is like modern poetry, nothing on the page but all about the inflections. So the music that I enjoy playing and other people like listening too is the music that is rooted firmly in the tonal.

This may be a too softly softly approach to you as you have indicated in the past, but that is my nature. I will lead listeners from what they know to my world. But my music is still rooted in tonalism.

This does not mean that I am closed to any of the developments in new music, but what is this music for. Some of it seems to be for the benefit of the composer alone. And if you don't like it you are not educated enough for it like the Emperors new clothes. There should always be experiment and exploration but there has to be a triangle of composer, performer and listener. And at the moment the majority of listeners are being ignored.

I am also to some extent playing devils advocate, so I look forward to your answers.


  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  ruska02 at 02:57 on 03 August 2008

I really try to be the most detached and professional blogger now, if even if I really think it is not point discussing , in the classical contempory music world, about your ideas anymore, sorry.

1) Going back to tonal makes absolutely nonsense, even if it is not about tonal it is what you write using tonal or not principles. Many composers, including Francesconi, Kyburz, Haas ...and myself, composers now write use tonal and non tonal advanced principles but their music does not sound tonal or "old tonal " in any why. So "Do not open door have already been opened before".

2) Also why do you think many composers of the all the centuries from gregorian chant melismas to beethoven and Brahms , from Gesualdo to Scarlatti where really pushing forward the "boudaries of the tonal systhem.??????..simply because the world of musical sound is really amazing and there is so much to discover and deal about, to conquer and spread around and many other italian, deutsch and france words I do not really know how to proper translate into english*.

3) the last two year brought to high school student in Venice David Alberman, Klangforum Wien players and Jack Quartetto prove this basic point : "Learning is about exposure". And you mind is ready to approach and recollect only what has "visited" before... that is why a new project (not old ) is really needed. Student really proved to like more today contemporary music than Bach, and seemed more stimulated , after five meetings, by it than by the usual stuff the hear.

Anyway I am waiting here for contributions more into the field of people really devoted to the art of sound and , sorry silverman :-),
keep up the incredible western tradition. WE ARE TRYING TO BUILD A WEB TO PROVIDE WIDER EXPOUSURE (everybody n this web site knows many of preceding appeals) AND A PROJECT FOR 2009 2011 IS COMING CALLED EUROSONUS. I am really , and I mean really, concerned about what some retoric conservative mind lazy people may think. I may worried about what history may think of us if we are not able to start a complete new "reinassance" againts the world wide supermarket where "cheap is better" .

so "is a NEW project due or not..."

Roberto Composer

*You all know there is another big problem....., and I live in London most of the year and love this country who feeds me, ... another big problem is that english speaking musical money worlds (USA and UK) have absolutely no classical musical history up to the 20th century and now is growing in the wrong direction (Ades one for all...) and and is not talent meritocratic but money and politics meritocratic so "...we must put more dogs in this fight"...

  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  James McFadyen at 09:14 on 03 August 2008

Jim, are you really going to let him talk to you in that manner?

He has just called you completely inferior and has no wishes to discuss tonal music with you because he feels it is too demoralizing, yet if you stick up for tonalism, which you are right to do, he will attack you in a rather undignified manner.

Trust me, Jim, people like that are not worth talking to and certainly not worth working with.

I just ignore him now, he has over-simplified tonal music beyond belief. You cannot work with him because he is basically the anti-Christ and you cannot reason with him because he believes he is the best composer.

To be quite frank, he talks the talk but doesn't walk the walk.

Jim, you are much better than Roberto; just concentrate on producing powerful music and letting your music grow. If you have any doubts, read the first paragraph he wrote in his reply to you and tell me if that is someone who can work as part of a team?

  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  ruska02 at 09:44 on 03 August 2008

I agree completely to what you said but not about Jim, and he know because I wrote to him in another way , but about you ... that is for shure...beside that I never said I am the best composer ...please underline when and I will apologise ... last but not least if it is not worth working with me that is up the performers to decide...wanna list of the one who already did? .-)

You are nice brat james...alway joking hu!!!!!


  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  Jim Tribble at 17:15 on 03 August 2008

Hi James and Robert, first, James I don't feel attacked, I joined Roberto's discussion because he is thinking exactly as I am. Although his music and experience and reference points are different he is right to start this blog.
I have been struggling with this exact point for many years and my chosen route at the moment is to still explore the tonal side of things or rather to be aware of the tonal side of things in the way that I write.

I want to be educated and I want to discuss the fundamentals in this way because this is the crisis in our chosen art.

I've stated before that I am a self learner and am completely open to any sort of music. But I need this stimulation and discussion and dissent just as much as the positive. I feel that we all of us as composers unless very lucky need to talk and discuss and compare like this.

Roberto I will carry on our conversation via email.


  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  ruska02 at 19:33 on 03 August 2008

"I want to be educated and I want to discuss the fundamentals in this way because this is the crisis in our chosen art. "

Really thanks


  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  James McFadyen at 20:28 on 03 August 2008

It's good to discuss but it's even better to create.

Please, encourage your discussions, but, ultimately, you educate others by creating.

As a side note, it is only a crisis if you choose it to be a crisis; i.e. be a victim of the situation. To be a victim is a negative quantity. If music, in all it's diversity is to survive and grow it must proceed in a positive capacity. Positivity breeds creativity whereas negativity breeds bitterness and stifles creativity.

Education, debate and discussion is normally good but it must never take over from the art of doing. Men are measured by their actions.

Roberto, if Politics, Money and Commercialism bothers you so much, then why on earth did you become a composer? If composition was all about talent, we'd all be OK, the reality of it is that OK, yes talent is important but so are other external factors (politics, money and commercialism) - Opera being one of the major problems, where it hardly ever breaks even.

The best composers, and let it be known Roberto, the best composers are the ones who can harness and grow their talent to a diverse world and who can create music that the rest of the population can be moved by but still contribute back to society in financial growth.

Keeping artistic integrity whilst being financially viable is so important to becoming a composer IN THE REAL WORLD, not the imaginary egotistical world that has been imagined by the academia. Perhaps these are the issues that are more pressing to the modern day composer.

What about issues like writing by hand and not at the computer? I still write by hand because I believe it is the best and most musical and methodical way. What do others think..? We have to have discussions about these things because they "are in the now" and they are very much things promote positive attitudes and promote creating rather than just talking.

  Re: A new project is due ...or not ?  ruska02 at 20:50 on 03 August 2008

I am really sorry but I was asking for a discussion about this :

"memory and perception from cognitive psychology, acoustics and, to some extent, from cognitive linguistic and neural physiology. Starting from some of the most recent contributions and academic researches I would like to indicate what happens in memory and perception in the early stage of listening. After I would strive my attention on what listeners perceive ..."

not about writing by hand* ot not...I am really sorry James but please I would appreciate you
giving some higher contribution or ...keep on writing for brass bands...that is even a media no contemporary classical musician has ever been concerned about...brass ensembles yes ...but bands ?????...anyway,,,,


"Education, debate and discussion is normally good but it must never take over from the art of doing. Men are measured by their actions."

You are lecturing me about "ipsum factum verum est"? ...I worn you ...are you ready to show your CONTEMPORAY CLASSIC SCORES and COMPOSER CV?...I do...

"Cave Canem"


*Anyway "I write by hand, than translate it into computer written scores, while I check step by step with the previously chosen performers what I do both technically and poetically very careful to be "player friendly", than I check the over all result by hand, I translate and edit it vi a computer, I check it with the performer once again... after the premiere I pass it by with the performer and try to improve my work with his and the premiere impressions.. and I am still not happy with it most of the times..."....professional enought for you ?