[NetBehaviour] cloud chambers and Delusion of the Fury

Johannes Birringer Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk
Fri Aug 30 18:40:07 CEST 2013

dear all

on another note, and just having corresponded with Alan Sondheim on various instruments he is playing, I want to report on a premiere that happened in the Bochum Jahrhunderthalle last week, during this year's Ruhrtriennial Festival.  It was the performance of a most unusual music theatre piece,  Harry Partch's "Delusion of the Fury" (from 1969) --  a massive production directed by Heiner Goebbels and performed by the Ensemble musicFabrik.

I saw a summary report on the performance on ARTE, our cultural tv channel, and then also tracked a review in DIE ZEIT which will interest musicians and percussionists amongst you as the review, titled "Töne im Bergwerk" (by Wolfram Goertz)

http://www.zeit.de/2013/36/komponist-harry-partch-ruhrtriennale       [>  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U6Ef2C-jgQw  ]

has an embedded v i d e o  in it, in english and german, which shows how musicians from Ensemble musicFabrik took great care to rebuild, painstakingly, the instruments that Partch had originally designed and built according to his own tone system.  Some of these instruments are quite large and bulbous, strangely mysterious as well; I tried to take notes, listening to the musicians talk about the instruments and demonstrating them, 
particularly engaging is flutist Helen Bledsoe who is sampling and measuring pitches;  at the end you can also hear the ensemble perform.  Here are some of the instruments -- and i'm not even sure whether these names refer only to instruments or also to compositions and sections from "Delusion of the Fury"....

-  Glass bowls      (Thomas Meixner, percussionist, introduces  them and how they are cut)
- “Cloud chamber bowls”

- Spoils of war  (percussion instruments:  (marimba, blue spoils of war,  güiro, wood block, bamboo marimba instruments, glass bowls, high and low, tins (with foot pedal)

- Kithara (sequence of sideways guitars, strings, with resonsant body (wood), the musician says basically 12 guitars in a row (with 6 strings, tuned in a particular way), pyrex-bars to slide along
strings to produce the slide guitar like sound, with metal bars, resonators, using also old cello strings, piano strings,  something out of brass, small holes for the strings , bridge, etc)

- Adapted Guitar

-Eucal Blossom

-Gourd Tree and Cone Gongs

-Harmonic Canon


-Mazda Marimba

-Quadrangularis Reversum

- Marimba Eroica

-Castor and Pollux


Enjoy. Ah, the pleasures of being an instrument builder....!

with regards
Johannes Birringer

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