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Synthesizer-electronic compilation of artists searching for new sounds and forms of expression.
Perceptual Geography by Thomas Ankersmit is a musical tribute to the exceptional sound and installation artist, American composer and electronic music pioneer Maryanne Amacher (1938–2009). Ankersmit and Amacher met in New York in 2000 and kept in touch over the years. Amacher’s concerts and installations deeply impacted Thomas’ consciousness, and it was thanks to her that he began to use the Serge analogue modular synthesizers, created by Serge Tcherepnin in the 1970s. The title of the piece refers to Amacher’s essay (“Psychoacoustic Phenomena in Musical Composition: Some Features of a Perceptual Geography”) and, despite the use of purely electronic sound sources, natural associations with the sounds of wind, fire or thunder could not be avoided. With his piece Ankersmit examines different modes of listening: not only which sounds are heard on the particular moment, but also how and where the sounds are experienced (in the room, in the body, inside the head, in the distance, close by). A significant role is played here by the so-called otoacoustics (sounds emanating from inside the head, generated by the ears). Appropriately loud sound emission makes the material somehow go ‘beyond’ the speakers, which generates additional tones in the auditor’s head, which are not present in the music being played. Plugging your ears with your hands (not your fingers) and gently moving your head helps to make these sounds appear. Maryanne Amacher was the first artist to explore this musical and perceptual phenomenon (which she called the ear tones). Ankersmit has to each time tune in with his apparatus to the acoustics of the room in which he is performing.
Piotr Peszat regularly performs at Sacrum Profanum. That could mean that we all already know what to expect from his next première work. This time, however, we suggest putting your assumptions aside. Peszat will appear on stage not only in a new role, playing solo live electronic music and performing, but also with a new take on the socio-political issues he often refers to in his work. There has been a turnaround in the composer’s life and it was by no means an aesthetic change, as in this sphere he continues to develop by injecting alternative electronics into academic composition. We are talking about a right-wing, even radical-conservative, world-view turn in which Peszat revises his earlier anti-right-wing strikes. In his new work, Peszat has vivisected his own convictions, drawing deeply on his youthful manifestos imbued with the fervour of ideas and concern for the national community and the Polish raison d’état. Sacrum Profanum has for years been an agora for artistic statements commenting on reality, both from the social and political perspective. With the plurality of this debate in mind, we are delighted that the composer has approached us with a proposal to present this landmark work in his life for the first time on our stage.