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Concert 2 - Michel Chion: “Requiem” & Brian Bridges: "Ramp Waves"


8 July 2023



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what to expect

Immersive performance of Chion’s 50-year-old masterpiece of electroacoustic music

Immersive performance of Chion’s 50-year-old masterpiece of electroacoustic music.

Chion's "Requiem" was realised in the studios of the Groupe de recherches musicales (GRM) in Paris (France) and premiered on March 19, 1973 at the Théâtre Récamier in Paris. To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first performance, Northern Lights Project is embarking on an ambitious project to perform this work live in a number of locations in Ireland in 2023.

“Chion's Requiem probably represents one of the defining moments of the musique concrète canon, a work all other pieces must be judged by and one of the few absolute masterpieces of the genre.” – Modern Illusions

This performance of “Requiem” will be preceded by a special performance by Brian Bridges of Ramp Waves for c.1973 EMS Synthi AKS plus Modular Synths.

About Ramp Waves

A ramp wave is another name for a sawtooth wave, one of the archetypal harmonic-rich waveforms which form the building blocks of ‘classic’ subtractive (i.e. oscillator-filter-based), analogue-style synthesis. This piece, using, amongst other devices, a vintage EMS Synthi AKS analogue semi-modular synthesiser from c.1973 (hence, a 50-year-old, like the Chion piece which follows later in the programme) is inspired by the linear and non-linear nature of waves. 

In an age of long shadows of non-linearity and tipping points, I have found myself returning to the decomposing solids of drones, from the uneven steps of harmonic series microtonality to interfering frequency complexes conjuring phantoms and fractures. Transmutation and tipping points, cycles and cataclysms. Harmonics of historic crises meet rationalised risk assessments; Recognise, Asses, Minimise, and Prepare. An Experiment’s wave-cycle, another fraction (in)complete…Ramp-wave-destabilise-equilibrium…(repeat)?

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