Gassmann Electronic Music Series

Gassmann Electronic Music Series


Events sponsored by the
Gassmann Electronic Music Studio



FALL 2008



Kojiro Umezaki

Kojiro Umezaki

Wednesday, October 15, 2008 - 8:00 pm
Winifred Smith Hall - FREE
Claire Trevor School of the Arts
University of California, Irvine

Tradition and technology alternate in this program of pieces from the classical repertoire of the shakuhachi (Japanese end-blown flute) and original works incorporating technology.

Kojiro Umezaki grew up in Tokyo, Japan where he began studying Western flute and the shakuhachi. His career encompasses both traditional and technology-based music and a range of electronic media. "My mother is from Denmark and my father is Japanese. My multinational background may be one of the reasons why I don't limit myself to the traditional repertoire. In all my work, I try to put the shakuhachi in a more contemporary, musically diverse context. Hopefully this work can become part of the evolutionary process of the instrument."

Ko is Assistant Professor of Music at the University of California, Irvine. He performs regularly with the Silk Road Ensemble and the Montreal-based jazz trio, Beat in Fractions. His recordings are available on the Sony BMG, Healthy Boys, and Smithsonian Folkways labels, among others.

The shakuhachi - Japanese end-blown bamboo flute - is played by blowing air across the beveled edge at the top of the instrument, while covering and uncovering the holes with fingertips. Introduced to Japan in the 7th century, it has been used to create music for Zen Buddhist meditation. The sounds produced by the shakuhachi range from soft whispers to strong piercing tones, often intended to reflect natural phenomena such as falling leaves, wind, and the cries and gestures of animals.



Michael Dessen  Nancy Ostrovsky

An Inter-Arts Telematic Performance

Saturday, October 25, 2008 - 8:00 pm
Cal-IT2 Auditorium - FREE

Performers in Irvine, CA - Myra Melford, piano; Michael Dessen, trombone; Oguri, dance
Performers in San Diego, CA - Mark Dresser, bass; Nancy Ostrovsky, painting

Taking place simultaneously in two sites, this performance features original music compositions, art and dance from five performers collaborating in real time using advanced internet technologies.






Marc Battier  

The History and Repertoire of Electroacoustic Music

January 22 through February 5, 2009

Marc Battier, visiting professor from the University of Paris-Sorbonne, will give a series of lectures on selected topics in the history and repertoire of electroacoustic music. All lectures are free and open to the public.

Location: Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory (REALab)
Room 216, Music and Media Building (Bldg. No. 726), Claire Trevor School of the Arts, UCI

Wednesday, January 21, 2009 - 5:00-6:20 pm
Noise and artificial sound in music and art, and the role of technology (part 1)

Thursday, January 22, 2009 - 12:30-1:50 pm
Noise and artificial sound in music and art, and the role of technology (part 2)

Wednesday, January 28, 2009 - 5:00-6:20 pm
60 years of electroacoustic music in France, from musique concrète to acousmatic music (part 1)

Thursday, January 29, 2009 - 12:30-1:50 pm
60 years of electroacoustic music in France, from musique concrète to acousmatic music (part 2)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009 - 3:30-4:50 pm
From image to sound, the making of Audioscan, based on the works of surrealist painter Roberto Matta

Wednesday, February 4, 2009 - 1:00-2:20 pm
The study of electroacoustic music in East Asia
(Light refreshment will be served at 12:45.)

Thursday, February 5, 2009 - 12:30-1:50 pm
Transparence, based on the sound poetry of Henri Chopin

The residency of Marc Battier at UCI is made possible by the Gassmann Electronic Music Studio, the UCSD Music Department, the UCI Center for Asian Studies, and the UCI Music Department. Mr. Battier's lectures are part of a prototype academic exchange between the UCI Music Department and the UFR in Music and Musicology of Paris-Sorbonne.

The Gassmann Electronic Music Series thanks professors Frédéric Billiet, Rand Steiger, Anne Walthall, and David Brodbeck for their support, and UCI Music Department Management Services Officer Juliana Wissa and Administrative Assistant Sally Avila for their administrative support.



Mari Kimura

Reinventing Tradition: Violin and Computer plays the East and Beyond

Wednesday, February 11 - 8:00 pm
Winifred Smith Hall - FREE, no ticket required
Claire Trevor School of the Arts
University of California, Irvine

Japanese violinist-composer Mari Kimura will present a diverse program of violin and electronics, featuring works that are written for her and by herself. Ms. Kimura uses interactive computer, combining the sounds from the East and the West, reinventing the vocabulary and the musical language of her instrument.

Ms. Kimura will also give two free public lectures the same afternoon:

Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - 1:00-2:20 pm
"'Woods and Chips': Traditional Musical Instruments with Computers"
(Light refreshment will be served at 12:45.)
Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory (REALab)
Room 216, Music and Media Building (Bldg. No. 726), Claire Trevor School of the Arts, UCI

Ms. Kimura, a Japanese violinist/composer educated at Toho School in Tokyo and Juilliard School in New York, discusses her latest work using classical violin and Japanese Shamisen with interactive computer system. The lecture will also include topics concerning contemproary Japanese composers working with Traditional instruments in their creative activities, Japanese-American composers and American composers who choose to use Japanese Traditional instruments in their compositions, and ultimately what impact these various artists have in the future of Japanese musical art. This presentation is sponsored by the UCI Center for Asian Studies.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - 5:00-6:20 pm
"Traditional Musical Instruments in Interactive Computer Music"
Pre-concert lecture/demonstration, Winifred Smith Hall, UCI

Violinist/composer Mari Kimura will give a pre-concert talk on her works with interactive technology as a classically-trained performer. The topics include her extended bowing technique "Subharmonics", and the demonstration of a bowing sensor device developed at IRCAM, called the "Augmented Violin System", discussing this gestural control device in her interactive works.



Anne La Berge

Music for Flute and Computer

Wednesday, March 4 - 5:00 pm
Room 220, Music and Media Building - FREE, no ticket required
Claire Trevor School of the Arts
University of California, Irvine

Anne La Berge will perform works by English composer Michael Young, German/Croatian composer Marko Ciciliani, and herself. The works range from fully composed to guided improvisations, and include interactions with the computer not only as a musical partner but also as a means to tell stories.

flute_prosthesis for solo flute and max/msp (2009) - Michael Young
Reflux-Refract for solo flute and live-electronics (2006) - Marko Ciciliani
leaks&strokes for soloist and max/msp (2008) - Anne La Berge
field for soloist and max/msp/jitter (2008) - Anne La Berge
drive for flute and max/msp (2006) - Anne La Berge

Anne La Berge's career as flutist/improviser/composer stretches across stylistic boundaries. Her performances bring together the elements on which her reputation is based: a ferocious and far-reaching virtuosity, a penchant for improvising delicately spun microtonal textures and melodies, her wholly unique array of powerfully percussive flute effects, all combined with cutting edge electronics. The last few years have seen a new addition to her work: text which slides seemlessly in and out of her compositions and improvisations. She is known for her innovative collaborations ranging from chamber music to electro-improvisations.

Ms. La Berge will also give a free public lecture the same afternoon:

Wednesday, March 4, 2009 - 1:00-2:20 pm
"Resonant Dendrites": a lecture/performance using text and film fragments of David LaBerge
Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory (REALab)
Room 216, Music and Media Building (Bldg. No. 726), Claire Trevor School of the Arts, UCI

Anne La Berge will perform the work Resonant Dendrites and will discuss her approaches to interaction with technology. She and her scientist father David LaBerge have created a work that integrates their knowledge and passions. To collaborate, each specialist has transformed the creative process to form a meeting point. This process of collaboration between neuropsychology and art is articulated in the form of a lecture/performance using video clips, sound clips, and performance. The lecture/performance "Resonant Dendrites" looks at creative explanations of recent neuropsychological findings.

David LaBerge is a senior neuropsychologist living in Tacoma, WA and is a former faculty of the Universities of California at Irvine, Minnesota, and Simon's Rock College. He has recently been publishing his findings on apical dendrite activity in cognition and consciousness. His findings define the conditions of cortical neural activity in the brain during cognitive processes, from reflex responses to the deepest levels of meditation. Anne La Berge is a flutist/composer living in Amsterdam. She features live improvisation, interactive electronics and enigmatic storytelling as elements in her compositions.






Transcontinental Circuits

A Multi-Site Networked Concert

Micahel Dessen, trombone and electronics (UCI)
Adnan Marquez, woodwinds and electronics (Stanford)
Jason Robinson, woodwinds and electronics (Amherst)

Friday, April 3 - 5:00 pm PDT (8:00 pm EDT)
FREE, no ticket required
Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory
216 Music and Media Building
Claire Trevor School of the Arts
University of California, Irvine

Featuring performers in three sites:

Jason Robinson (woodwinds and electronics), Buckley Recital Hall, Amherst College

Adnan Marquez (woodwinds and electroncs), Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) Main Stage, Stanford University

Michael Dessen (trombone and electronics), Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory (REALab), Music and Media Building, University of California, Irvine

All concert sites are free admission and will have live audiences.

This concert is made possible by the Amherst College Music Department, the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) at , and the Gassmann Electronic Music Studio at the University of California, Irvine.



Abbie Conant

Trombone and Performance Art

Wednesday, April 22 - 8:00 pm
Winifred Smith Hall - FREE, no ticket required
Claire Trevor School of the Arts
University of California, Irvine

Trombonist Abbie Conant and composer William Osborne perform two original works for live performer and multimedia.

Cybeline is a music theater work about a cyborg trying to be a talk show host to prove she is human. It is about nature, virtual reality, biotechnology, and the mass media -- about finding the heart and poetry in technology as it also contemplates its horrors. We explore our notion that the creation of a cyborg does not depend on the metalization of the body, but on the programmability of the mind. We live in a wired together, prosthetic world of global "cyberbia" where our minds are programmed by the mass media.

In Music for the End of Time the electronic music of the surround sound creates a sonic environment in which the trombone is the central figure. The work explores all aspects of the trombone, ranging from expressions of "divine wrath," to wild rhythmic unisons with the Four Horsemen, to the gentlest, meditative lyricism.

Abbie Conant and William Osborne will also give two free public lectures the next day:

Thursday, April 23, 2009 - 12:30-1:50 pm
"Multimedia and Music Performance: Creating Chamber Music Theater"
Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory (REALab)
Room 216, Music and Media Building (Bldg. No. 726), Claire Trevor School of the Arts, UCI

Abbie Conant and William Osborne will discuss their methods for creating and performing works for chamber music theater. Topics covered will include techniques for creating music theater texts; inter-disciplinary performance practices; compositional techniques; their methods of working together; and the use of technology such as computer music, surround sound, lighting, alternate controllers, and video. The presentation will include numerous audio visual examples, and end with comments about the strong influences music theater has had on the historical evolution of Western classical music. At the end, time will be left for discussion.

Thursday, April 23, 2009 - 2:00-3:20 pm
"Dealing with Gender Discrimination in Classical Music"
Realtime Experimental Audio Laboratory (REALab)
Room 216, Music and Media Building (Bldg. No. 726), Claire Trevor School of the Arts, UCI

Abbie Conant and William Osborne will discuss their decades of experience dealing with overt gender discrimination in the classical music world. They will focus on the gender cultures in the music worlds of Germany and Austria; Abbie's egregious experiences with discrimination as solo-trombonist of the Munich Philharmonic; the Vienna Philharmonic's radically discriminatory employment practices (the orchestra forbade membership to women until 1997); examples of extreme misogyny in the Ars Electronica's 2000 Festival for the digital arts; and the lack of women composition professors in America and Europe. They will end with a discussion of how they have responded to discrimination through their art. At the end, time will be left for discussion.


Abbie Conant is somewhat of a legend in the brass world. She was principal trombone of the Munich Philharmonic for 13 years and recorded a critically acclaimed CD entitled Trombone and Organ/Posaune und Orgel. The story of her struggle for equal treatment and the same pay as her male colleagues in the Munich Philharmonic appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Der Spiegel and many other newspapers and makes up the last chapter of Malcolm Gladwell's book Blink which was on the New York Times bestseller list for 18 weeks. A full length documentary called Abbie Conant, Alone Among Men was aired several times on 3-SAT European television. With her composer-husband William Osborne she has created a grippingly dramatic repertoire of music theatre works for acting/singing trombonist. The artist couple has toured to over 140 cities in Europe and the USA with their own multimedia productions. Abbie has given masterclasses at the Juilliard School, Indiana University, Yale School of Music, New England Conservatory, Eastman School of Music, Manchester School of Music among many others. She has been a juror on several international trombone competitions including Porcia, Geneva, Lieksa and the N.A. Rimksy Korsakov. The International Trombone Association Journal has featured Abbie Conant in a cover article and described her as "in the first rank of world class trombonists". She performs internationally as a concerto soloist, recitalist, improviser and performance artist. In 1992 the Baden-Württenberg State Ministry for Education, in recognition of her international reputation as a trombonist, named her full tenured Professor of Trombone at the esteemed Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Trossingen, Germany. In 1996 the 4200 members of the International Trombone Association elected her as their President-Elect. Her International Trombone Camp, which was founded in 1987 in Germany and Italy, has featured guest artists such as Joe Alessi, Charles Vernon, Michael Mulcahy, Jiggs Whigham, Carsten Svanberg, Heinz Fadle, Stuart Dempster, Ingemar Roos, Jay Friedman and others. She has recently founded the world's first Trombone Chamber Music Institute.

William Osborne studied with George Crumb in Philadelphia and with Franco Donatoni at the National Academy of Italy. Among his awards are two from the American Society of Authors, Composers, and Publishers, a Doctoral Fellowship to Columbia University, and a prize from the Munich Theater Commission. Since 1993 his works have been performed in over 140 cities in North America and Europe. Mr. Osborne has written numerous articles about the social and political influences of symphony orchestras including "Symphony Orchestras and Artist-Prophets" published by the M.I.T. Press. He has appeared on "Good Morning America" and NPR as well as having been the subject of a feature article by MSNBC.



This page was last modified on March 30, 2009.
Christopher Dobrian