I/O New Music

I/O Festival – Opus Zero Band and Percussion Ensemble

I/O FEST ’10

Steven Dennis Bodner and Matthew Gold, directors

After a very successful debut of the faculty ensemble last year, the Williams College Department of Music proudly expands the I/O New Music BOX concert to a full weekend new music festival. Performances will take place over three days from Thursday, Jan. 7 through Saturday, Jan. 9, at ’62 Center and the Williams College Museum of Art. These free events are open to the public, however all performances at ’62 require tickets via the Box Office: 413-597-2425.

Preposition Trilogy
Opus Zero Band and Williams Percussion Ensemble
Directed by Steven Dennis Bodner and Matthew Gold

On Saturday, January 9, 8pm in the CenterStage in the ’62 Center, the Opus Zero Band and Percussion Ensemble, conducted by Steven Bodner and Mathew Gold respectively, combine to perform the final program of the festival, featuring the American premiere of Michel van der Aa’s Preposition Trilogy for ensemble and soundtrack. Van der Aa (b. 1970, Netherlands) is one of Europe’s most sought-after composers today. In fact, he was the first Dutch composer to win the prestigious International Gaudeamus Prize (1999). For van der Aa, music is more than organized sound or a structuring of notes. He believes that sound is malleable: it can constantly assume other forms, sometimes recognizable, sometimes not. His sounds – like real people – can be flexible or stubborn; they either take control or get the short end of the stick; they reinforce or counteract each other. The central theme, then, in his high-density Preposition Trilogy—Above, Between, and Attach—is the relationship between the musicians and the soundtrack, the ways in which the acoustic sounds interact with electronic counterparts. While the soundtracks to his pieces are pre-realized, the interaction between live musicians and pre-recorded sounds is anything but static. Instead, the discourse is spontaneous, volatile and dynamic, with the musicians entering into a sonic dialogue with electronics. Experiencing van der Aa’s music, then, is not purely aural, but also visual—hearing his music is a visceral, phenomenological experience. Rounding out the program are works for four alto saxophones by Elliott Carter and six celli by Wolfgang Rihm. [Free, but tickets required. Call 413-597-2425.]

Michel van der Aa, Above
Elliott Carter, “Nocturne” from Canonic Suite
Michel van der Aa, Between
Wolfgang Rihm, Protokoll-ein Traum
Michel van der Aa, Attach