El Árbol de la noche triste
- Author(s): MacCallum, John Andrew
- Advisor(s): Campion, Edmund
- et al.
El Árbol de la noche triste is a composition for solo scordatura viola
sounds which are generated algorithmically in real-time during the performance.
In the work that follows, the compositional techniques employed throughout the piece are
discussed along with the design of the algorithms used in the computer part.
The retuning of the viola to four partials of a harmonic series
in the manner described below severely constrains the
compositional possibilities, but also creates a number of affordances that are not
present on the traditionally tuned instrument.
One is forced, when working
within such constrained environments, to design compositional systems that take
into account the nature of
the instruments for which one is composing in a much more profound
way than when composing for instruments in a configuration familiar to both the
composer and performer.
The compositional system becomes inextricably linked to the medium;
one composes for the instrument instead of in the abstract.
A similar approach is taken with the computer: the compositional system has many
features in common with that of the viola, but is only realizable on the computer.
The result is the unification of the antithetical worlds of the acoustic
instrument and the computer through compositional process.