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Old 02-08-2013, 09:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Aleatoric Music Question

Hey guys, I had a quick question for anyone who has an understanding in aleatoric music.

I was at a performance of Morton Feldman's Crippled Symmetry, and after talking to the performers I learned a little bit into the concept of the style. Now after some research I've hit a rut. I honestly haven't a clue where to continue looking besides what I've found so far. What I've heard so far is a couple of Morton Feldman's pieces (Crippled Symmetry and Rothko Chapel), John Cage's influence to the concept and Terry Riley's "In C". Does anyone else have any suggestions where I should continue looking?
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:26 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Aleatoric music (also referred to as indeterminacy) is an attempt to omit the composer from the compositional process... usually leaving it to chance. John Cage, who "invented" it, often used mathematical equations to create a piece of music. However, he used other methods as well. In his work, Variations IV (1965), he used motion sensor light beams during a ballet, which were triggered by dancers when they moved across them. When this happened, prerecorded electronic pieces and live field recordings were played.

Some people might say that aleatoric music can be found simply by going outside and listening to the sounds around you. Either way, I'm sure you get the idea.
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Old 02-12-2013, 01:46 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rostasi View Post
Aleatoric music (which is not always referred to as "indeterminacy") is not an attempt to omit the composer from the compositional process.
Incorrect, many people refer to it as chance music or indeterminacy... especially when referring to John Cage's body of work. If this is not true, then please explain the difference. Also, yes, most of the time it is an attempt to eliminate the composer's "ego" from the compositional process. That is why many pieces following the aleatoric concept use chance operations. However, this is not always the case.
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John Cage did not "invent" aleatoric music (nor had he ever claimed this).
He was the first to do so on record as far as my knowledge goes. If not, please explain who did.
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Also, Cage did not "often" use "mathematical equations" to create his music.
Uh... yes he did. Go read the book Musicage: Cage Muses on Words, Art, Music , then get back to me.
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"Variations IV" was from 1963, not '65, and the second part of a trilogy of pieces.
Variations IV (with David Tudor)
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As for "going outside and listening to the sounds around you" (you can do this "inside" as well),
maybe the only people that would find this an example of aleatoric music would
be those that think that maybe some supreme being used chance operations to
manipulate a master score that is now being performed, but, I have to admit,
I've yet to hear anyone say it in this way.
I suppose you could say that if you believe there has to be a composer enable for music to exist.

Last edited by Cenotaph; 02-12-2013 at 01:53 AM.
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