insonic counterpoint for 4 computer pianos
Soloklavier: Susanne Achilles
With works by Conlon Nancarrow, Klarenz Barlow, Jagyeong Ryu (UA), Jean-Claude Risset, Ludger Brümmer, a.o.; solo piano: Susanne Achilles
Sat, September 25, 2021 8 pm CEST
Language: German

As part of the »EASTN-DC« project, self-playing piano works will be presented in the ZKM Foyer.

Probably the most successful acoustic music machines are concert grand pianos that can be controlled by integrating instrument and computer. Their development follows a long history from autonomously playing player pianos to Nancarrow's precise paper roll control with pneumatic mechanics. Computerised grand pianos enable an unimagined rhythmic precision, which is also articulated as spatial sound when several instruments are used. With the kind support of the ComputerStudio of the Karlsruhe University of Music, which made this concert possible by lending three computer pianos, a total of four computer pianos will be controlled by a computer in the large sound space of the ZKM foyer.

For this, Klarenz Barlow arranged the famous »Studies« by Conlon Nancarrow for this cast and created his own surprising polyphonic works in an astonishing stylistic variety.

In addition, the masterful and visionary »Eight Sketches – Duet for one Pianist« by Jean-Claude Risset will be presented. In it, Risset interweaves the actions of the performer Susanne Achilles with those of the computer controlled by Michael Edwards, which continuously intervenes in the pianist's playing.

Ludger Brümmer pushes the boundaries of spatial hearing and the subtlety of grand piano mechanics with his work »between twilight«. The work, commissioned by the Philharmonie Essen, will be heard here for the first time in the version for four pianos.

Another highlight will be presented by the Duisburg composer Jagyeong Ryu with her exciting world premiere »Wenn ich auf den Flügeln singe, ...«.

In addition to the evening concert, the grand pianos will enliven the foyer of the ZKM with hourly interventions during the day on September 25 and 26. The joint composition »Kla4« by the Essen composers Dirk Reith, Thomas Neuhaus, Michael Edwards and Günter Steinke, presented as a sound installation, will be heard, in which their different algorithmic approaches meet in a communicative, complementary and divergent interplay. Excerpts from these works will also be interspersed in the evening programme.

The event will be held in German.


The event takes place within the framework of the »EASTN-DC« project, co-financed by the European Union's »Creative Europe« funding programme.


ZKM | Hertz-Lab
Ludger Brümmer (Artistic Director)
Dominik Kautz (Production Manager & Bill)
Benjamin Miller (Sound Director)
Jakob Schreiber (Assistant Sound Director)
Hans Gass (Light & Stage Technician)
Manuel Urrutia (Support Light & Stage Technician) 
Mirko Posluschny (Support Stage Technician)

ZKM | Video Studio
Christina Zartmann
Moritz Büchner
Andy Koch
Johanna Ott

ZKM | Communication & Marketing

Organization / Institution
ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe

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