The Akousma@ series encompasses our different partnerships, our one-off co-presented concerts, and the ad hoc programs that we put together at the invitation of other organizations.

If you can’t come to Akousma, Akousma will come to you!

Akousma@Mutek — Akousma@Empac — Akousma@FMC — Akousma@Eastern Bloc —Akousma@Griffintown —

Akousma@CIRMMT —Akousma@SAT —Akousma@Suoni —Akousma@MTL-Connecte —Akousma@CMM —

March 23, 2022 • Akousma@CIRMMT

Morton Subotnick
+ Lillevan

MUTEK, AKOUSMA et CIRMMT present: “As I Live & Breathe”, created and performed by Morton Subotnick with live video by Lillevan.
Ana Dall’Ara-Majek
Louis Dufort

March 23, 2022
Doors: 19h15
CIRMMT (527, rue Sherbrooke West)
30 $* (tx+fs inclus)
*Please note that masks are mandatory (subject to changes according to new regulations).

Morton Subotnick & Lillevan (US)

Morton Subotnick is one of the pioneers in the development of electronic music and multi-media performance and an innovator in works involving instruments and other media, including interactive computer music systems. Most of his music calls for a computer part, or live electronic processing; his oeuvre utilizes many of the important technological breakthroughs in the history of the genre. His work Silver Apples of the Moon has become a modern classic and was recently entered into the National Registry of Recorded works at the Library of Congress. Only 300 recordings throughout the entire history of recordings have been chosen.

Lillevan is a well known video artist, live performer and co-founded of the visual audio group Rechenzentrum (Berlin, 1997–2008) Lillevan’s performances, DVD releases, collaborations and solo works have been acclaimed by critics and audiences alike, taking visual music, animation, bricolage and film manipulation to new levels.

As I Live and Breathe, 60’

As I Live and Breathe is the title I have given to one of my last ‘performance’ pieces.

Between 1961 and 1980, my principal work as a composer was devoted to the development of electronic music as a studio art. The first four years of that period were spent with Don Buchla designing and building an appropriate instrument with which to make music, not for public performance, but for the phonograph record heard in one’s home, a new ‘chamber music.’  After this period of time working with Don Buchla, I began creating works for electronics and instruments and large-scale multimedia projects. In the last decade, technology has made it possible for me to bring equipment onto the stage and perform in public. My performance pieces have employed the computer alongside my analog equipment, sometimes alone, but often paired with a video artist doing real time animation. The technique and process of creating multiple performance works over the last decade has resulted in what I feel will be the ultimate fulfillment of my public performance activity in As I Live and Breathe.

At 88, it will be one of the last, if not the last, of my public performance works.

As I Live and Breathe opens with the sounds of my breathing into a microphone: a single inhale, followed by silence, followed by an exhale. There is silence between each breath gesture and the stage is dark with the exception of a spot on my face. In the silences, visual ‘breaths’ start to appear. Music and image develop in long phrases, simply at first and gradually transforming. The phrases grow more complex and animated as my breath becomes the trigger for new sounds, rhythms and electronic pitches, with and without my breath. The sound of my original breath returns at the end, and like a butterfly emerging from its cocoon, is transformed into rhythms and melodies that end with a single, quiet exhaled breath. I think of As I Live and Breathe as a musical metaphor for my life in music.

To open the program:

Ana Dall’Ara-Majek (CA/QC)

Ana Dall’Ara-Majek is a composer and sound artist living in Montréal. She is dedicated to the study of how instrumental, electroacoustic and computational-thinking approaches interact in music. She performs regularly as an electronic musician and theremin player with groups Jane/KIN, ILÉA and blablaTrains. She is also a visiting professor at University of Montréal where she’s teaching composition at the digital music department.

Xylocopa Ransbecka (2017) 15’22’’

I had left for Place de Ransbeck in search of Rumeurs’s thirteen doors when I encountered an angry hymenopteran who fled my microphone by hiding in the cracks of a wooden beam. This is how my piece was first conceived. It features a carpenter bee and twenty doors recorded at Musiques & Recherches (Ohain, Belgium). In it, I continue my exploration of changes of scale, from a passage in human proportions featuring familiar sounds to the more abstract world of microfauna, where bacteria found in wood form wriggling masses. Between these two sizes of scale, the carpenter bee carves out wood shavings and comes buzzing around our ears.

This piece is part of Nano-Cosmos, a cycle of acousmatic pieces dedicated to insects, small arthropods and microorganisms.

Louis Dufort (CA/QC)

Louis Dufort is a Montréal composer. His productions are numerous and of multiple forms: fixed support, mixed with live processing, visual music and installation. He has also been a regular collaborator with Compagnie Marie Chouinard since 1996. In 2018, he composed the soundtrack for Denys Arcand’s latest film, The Fall of the American Empire. In addition to his creative work, Louis Dufort teaches composition at the Montréal Conservatory of Music and is artistic director of the AKOUSMA festival for which he received an Opus Award for artistic director of the year 2018.

Into the forest my wounded arms wide open, 9’57’’

The title Into the forest my wounded arms wide open underpins a cathartic space where the human psyche is exposed to this imperial forest.

Into the forest my wounded arms wide open was developed over several years, then revised and finalized in 2020-21 at the composer’s studio in Montréal (Québec). A draft version was presented on April 7, 2016 at the concert Électrochoc 6 at the Studio multimédia of the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal.

The piece has been performed in Florence, Montréal and Québec City…

This project has been made possible by the Government of Canada, the Conseil des arts de Montréal, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec and the Canada Council for the Arts.