If you want an example of complex music technology, look no further than the symphony orchestra. This peculiar blend of instruments from different times and different cultures has to be the most musically complex entity in existence. But that hasn’t stopped the new music-centered American Composers Orchestra from asking how the orchestra could continue to evolve and assimilate new technology.
This weekend in New York and Philadelphia, the American Composers Orchestra presents a concert mixing electronic music tech with the biggest acoustic sound on the planet, the orchestra. They’ve pulled all the stops: electric violin with laptop, laptop and turntablist DJs, drum pads, and even the orchestra reimagined through the filter of DJ and electronica techniques. Involved forces involve everyone from choreographer Bill T. Jones to composer Neil Rolnick to Daniel Bernard Roumain (pictured). I’ll be at the New York show and plan to cover this more, but in the meantime, here’s some reading material. And if you’re local, hope you’ll check this out and let us know what you think.
ACO Orchestra Underground Tech & Techno
Composer Neil Rolnick and Violinist Todd Reynolds, Interviewed by Joel Chadabe
A Composer, a Dance Choreographer, a DJ, and Filmmaker (sounds like the opening line from a really exclusive joke . . . so a turntablist, an interactive media artist, and Merce Cunningham walk into a bar . . . especially excited about this one)