A very exciting product launch
(for quintet, interactive video, audience participation and electronics)
2x hidden performers (1 operating MIDI controller and laptop, the other facilitating the audience participation with wireless microphone)
First performed by ensemble mosaik, Matthew Grouse and Sebastian Brix - 30/09/2022 - Kammermusiksalen, Aarhus Musikhuset
A very exciting product launch presents the audience with an exclusive new product demonstration, presented by fictitious music tech company, ‘Florg’. The Ensemble Kontrol 2 is a ‘voice-activated’ software device that purports to allow users (in this case the audience) to create and tweak their own music for 5 musicians. By using a series of voice commands, they can, in real-time, tweak a selection of musical parameters (such as speed, volume, instrumentation and timbral complexity) to personalise the music to their taste.
A large graphical representation of the Ensemble Kontrol 2 is seen on screen, which appears to react to the audience’s voice commands and thereafter cause any corresponding changes that the ensemble make to their playing. In actuality, akin to the Wizard of Oz, the product is an elaborate ruse, which sees a hidden performer reacting to the audience voice-commands and manually triggering instructions for the performers to execute. The artificiality of the situation is revealed over the course of the piece, exposing the product as disappointing, limited in scope, faulty, as well as giving rise to doubt surrounding authenticity, causality, agency, and control.
Ensemble Mosaik - 30.09.22, Kammermusiksalen, Det Jyske Musikkonservatorium, Aarhus - 20.00