Photo Credit: Erik Tham Photography
Quasi una macchina (2017)

Scoring: fl, cl, vn, vlc, pf

I. air — passepied
II. tempo giusto; quasi una macchina

The Callithumpian Consort
June 2018, Summer Institute for Contemporary Performance Practice New England Conservatory, Boston, US
Rachel Beetz, flute/ David Angelo, clarinet/ Gabriela Diaz, violin/ Stephen Marotto, violoncello/ Aya Yamamoto, piano


Awards:
Second Prize, the 3rd International Composition Competition GMCL / Jorge Peixinho, Lisbon, Portugal, 2017
Jury includes Ivan Fedele (chair) and Gerhard Stabler

Performance(s) history:
- June 2018, The Callithumpian Consort, IDITAROD
Summer Institute for Contemporary Performance Practice New England Conservatory, Boston, US
- Feb 2018, S.E.M. Ensemble, Emerging Composers Workshop Willow Place Auditorium, Brooklyn, NY
- Nov 2017, Grupo de Música Contemporânea de Lisboa (GMCL) Cine Joaquim de Almeida Theater, Montijo, Portugal

Duration: ca. 13 minutes

Program notes
        Quasi una macchina was gradually reproduced from my previous work, parastrata, almost unconsciously and seamlessly. Thus, this piece can be regarded as a sequel or an extention of the anterior work, or a tablet which complements a diptych. The heterogeneous and automated algorithmic process which drove parastrata like a “body-without organs” consequently coerced an epiphanic direction of energy towards totally unpredicted terrain, similar to a birth of a bewitched creature without having any self-consciousness. Therefore, this sequel can be regarded as a testimony to how a simple unicellular structure can evolve to an almost “alive” musical entity through certain melo-harmonic and rhythmic experiments with repetitions, evolutions, and mutations (as of machine learning, or more precisely, a machine awakening.)

        While writing this log of becoming process, I tried not to involve my consciousness but limit my role inasmuch as an administrator throughout the overall trajectory, such as closed-loop or unsupervised learning model in AI programming. Finally, in the 2rd movement, this humanoid begins to compose a new passepied, which is totally inhumane and far from commonsensical man-made artworks. The ultimate purpose of this latter part was to discover an utterly pristine musical creature; at the same time every single organ of the creature is a causatum of preceding events with a relatively simple network. While the prequel renders a genesis of waving cellular network, this two movements—sequel can be regarded as a process in which a creature created from the nexus of multi-strata is recursively creating another creature (in this case, passepied.) The fully saturated shrilling harmonies generated by FM formulae helped me to animate this android-like clangorous soundscape; a sonic facsimile of natural acoustics —twilights before the sunlight.