A Sea Lament
This piece is composed for the Florida State University Electric Chamber Orchestra (EChO). Being an entirely electronic ensemble, it is an area very few composers are accustomed to. EChO is comprised of entirely electric instruments with no resonating bodies. The ensemble includes an electric string quintet (two violins, viola, cello, and bass), two electric wind instruments, or EWI's, a Kurzweil keyboard, and an electric percussion section that consists of a Xylosynth and an Octapad. All of the instruments are processed through a computer with various effects in real time and then played through a hexaphonic surround speaker system. However, the Kurzweil can be substituted for similar synthesizer's if unavailable; descriptions of the desired sounds are found within the appendix. Similarly, the Xylosynth may be substituted for similar midi capable percussion instruments such as the Malletcat, and the Octapad may be switched with other pad triggered devices if the primary is not available. The piece is best heard when played back through a 6 channel surround sound setup, however, playback in a 4 channel setup is acceptable. As far as plugins go, Sound Designer, which is used in all of the movements, is available in Apple's Logic 9 pro. However, for the first movement, Soundtoy's Crystallizer as well as Tremolator, are required and are highly integrated parts of the piece that cannot be performed without. The only movements that can be performed with default Logic plugins are movement two, Fade, and movement three, Something Rich and Strange. Other technologies that are highly suggested for a successful performance are a minimum 16 channel mixer, preferably digital, an 8 channel stereo headphone amp, and iMac computer with a minimum of 2.0 ghz processing power as well as 4 gigabytes of DDR RAM. In the included diagram of the ensemble's setup there are two computers in the back as well. One used by the percussionist and one used by the keyboard player. These are not required but do help alleviate processing stress on the main computer. If you have other computers with Logic 9 on them, I suggest you use them as pictured in the setup in the appendix for ideal routing and processing.
Chamber, EChO, Electric, Orchestra, Sound, Surround
April 2, 2012.
A Thesis submitted to the College of Music in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Music.
Includes bibliographical references.
Mark Wingate, Professor Directing Thesis; Ladislav Kubik, Committee Member; Clifton Callender, Committee Member.
Florida State University
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