Yeah, I’m a slacker who hasn’t composed or gone to many festivals this last year. I know. I also have a really good excuse – I’ve been teaching at both Mott Community College and Oakland University. That tends to take up a lot of time, as did the CD project.

But despite having all of my free time taken up by grading and course creation/prep, I have [finally] been able to finish a piece: Three Preludes for Un-Specified Instrument and Computer – available below in a zip archive that contains the Alto, Bass, and Treble clef versions. There are no transposing versions as the actual pitch level doesn’t really matter (the MaxMSP patch is not pitch dependent, just reactive).

I began these at the end of July, just after I had finished Concrete Oasis, while on vacation in Michigan City, IN, basing each prelude off of a different set of gestures composed using the most extremely out of tune notes on the piano in the living room. Each Prelude explores these initial gestures through mutation, refinement, and development into phrases. The computer processes these gestures, adding depth and color through granulation, spectral filtering, ring modulation, and other effects.

The actual composition, and about 80% of the programming was actually completed in October, due to my slightly hectic schedule. However, there were a number of typesetting issues that Finale was introducing that made completion a constant process of re-editing my scores. Fortunately, I had been anticipating the release of Dorico, and switched to it as soon as it came out. One quick MusicXML transfer, and everything was laid out almost exactly as in the final score. In fact, the only things I had to do were add cue numbers and change the clefs for the alto and bass versions. Suffice it to say, it was a much nicer environment to work in.

All the needed files are below, except for a copy of the MaxMSP runtime or demo, which can be found at Cycling74. The total performance time at tempo is about seven and a half minutes. Enjoy.

 

Three Preludes for Un-Specified Instrument and Computer

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