EMPAC Wave Field System, Alessandrini, Fusi: Luigi Nono

Friday, August 18, 2023
7:30 pm

Mary Flagler Cary Hall

This program uses the EMPAC High-Resolution Modular Loudspeaker Array for Wave Field Synthesis, which enables the placement of sounds in space in a unique way for both composers and listeners.

Fusi and Alessandrini
Proximity, distance – an homage to Luigi Nono, 2023
Improvisational exploration for violin, FeedBox, and the EMPAC Wave Field System

Luigi Nono
La lontananza nostalgica utopica futura, 1988-89
for violin and 8-track tape recording adapted for the EMPAC Wave Field System

Marco Fusi


Patricia Alessandrini


EMPAC Wave Field System

Todd Vos, Lead Audio Engineer
Stephen McLaughlin, Audio Engineer
Amadeus Regucera, Music Curator

Concert duration: approximately one hour and fifteen minutes

This concert is a collaboration between EMPAC and TIME:SPANS.

Mary Flagler Cary Hall
DiMenna Center for Classical Music
450 W 37th Street
New York, NY 10018

Program Notes

Luigi Nono
La lontananza nostalgica utopica futura (1988)

Before becoming a score, La lontananza was a sonic space. It was a room, filled with the sounds of moving chairs, laughing and chatting, and microphones and a violin. Luigi Nono was sitting in that space, listening and taking notes, and pasting together sounds and ideas. His fascination with sounds is mixed with respect and appreciation for all of them, from the aristocracy of the nineteenth-century violin repertoire to the everyday experience of a slamming door. Such a composite set of elements are equally welcomed within the audio material that Nono assembled for this piece, designing an ever-changing soundscape that allows and demands performers to play along its heterogeneous components, treading their own path within the hour of sounds that Nono has offered. When his attention focuses on the violin, Nono sits close to the performer, entering the most intimate and secret space that no listeners ever access. Nono listens with the ears of the violinist, and together with them he explores the stuttering of the bow before the string, the uncertainty of the fingers exploring the fingerboard, searching a way into the oscillation of the sound before it is heard. It is within these minutiae that the violin utters its first sounds, and the listeners are drawn closer and closer to the strings, within the smallest of the dynamics. La lontananza is conceived as a mental space, and it develops as real space. The recorded material and the violin explore the unique peculiarities of each room where they perform, moving through islands of sounds and clouds of silence, estranged sounds and enveloping vibrations. Each performance develops in a different and unforeseeable experience. In our concert, Nono’s tapes are diffused through EMPAC’s Wave Field Synthesis Array, an innovative technology for sonic spatialization that allows an incredibly defined and flexible projection of the original materials, enhancing the possibilities for creative dialogue between the two performers and offering to listeners a unique listening experience.

The Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY. Photo: Thomas Fichter

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