Acousmatic piece

dedicated to Ying-Chien Wang, highly talented ehru performer

Commissioned by Taiwan Music Institute and TPMC for International Taiwan Music Festival 2017

Fold-in is an acousmatic piece whose sounds come entirely from this instrument, very popular in Asia: the erhu, sometimes called the Chinese violin.

During the sound recordings, some characters of the instrument immediately asserted themselves: a very active tone, huge energy, a very marked timbre, a very long and intense sustain of the bow, a wide register of dynamics and highly varied play modes.

The reverse side of these strong characters is that here we have a highly identifiable instrument, sometimes connoted, whose genes are perceptible in all the manipulations.

The fold-in refers to techniques used in literature, with permutations, by William S. Burroughs and Brian Gysin in the years 1950 to 1960, whose work The Third Mind combines these different experiences.

These techniques naturally bring to mind the techniques for editing concrete music in its beginnings, then for editing electroacoustic music with the development of a true language arising from these elementary manipulations; the different experiences with collective works and exquisite cadavers practised in the nineteen sixties by French experimental studios will also be remembered (GRM, GMEB).

I have therefore retained these strong characters of the erhu (tone, sostenuto, timbre, pizzicato etc.), keeping the morphologies, the “allure” and other Schaefferian criteria, in order then to construct the discourse in a relatively simplicity of editing and mixing, including processes similar to fold-in.

Thank you to Ying-Chien, for these precious sounds.


Christian ELOY