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Music Festival Features "Orchestras of Sameness"

Dartmouth students and professors, celebrated composers, and pioneers in experimental music will perform in the 28th Annual Festival of New Musics from Saturday, May 6 through Wednesday, May 10. The festival's theme, "Orchestras of Sameness," refers to ensembles of like instruments and ideas. "In the festival you will hear this idea of sameness through string quartets, violin duets, and even in ensembles that bring together instruments from the farthest ends of the orchestra," says codirector Katey Blumenthal '06. "Sameness will be explored in improvisational interaction and through electro-acoustic mediums."

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The "Orchestras of Sameness" theme was inspired by the innovative work of the Princeton Laptop Orchestra (PLOrk), one of the festival's guest ensembles. Founded by Princeton Assistant Professor of Music Dan Trueman, PLOrk is an ensemble of computer-based musical instruments that represents the cutting edge technology of electro-acoustic music. PLOrk will perform and discuss electronic music Saturday, May 6 at 7 p.m. in Brace Commons.

The festival is primarily organized by undergraduates. Codirector Ryan Berger '04 says of its founding, "The festival began in part as a reaction to student requests to include more courses devoted to music composition and performance as opposed to music appreciation and analysis."

Marina Rosenfeld, a New York-based turntable artist, will perform with Dartmouth students and faculty in the Festival of New Musics Feature Concert on Tuesday, May 9 at 7 p.m. in Spaulding Auditorium. Rosenfeld's work includes large-scale, multimedia performances with solo and ensemble compositions for acoustic instruments, turntables, photography, and video. Koriko Umezaki, a 1993 graduate of Dartmouth's Master's Program in Electro-Acoustic Music, will perform a piece with Rosenfeld. An instructor of music technology at McGill University, Umezaki is currently developing electronic music systems for performance with the shakuhachi, a traditional Japanese bamboo flute. "It was in the past six years of the festival that organizers began inviting guest composers to perform with Dartmouth students and faculty," says Kui Dong, associate professor of music and the festival's faculty advisor. "The performances by guest composers reflect the festival's equal focus on acoustic music, and multi-media works."

Click here for a detailed schedule of festival events.

By LAUREN LOTKO '06

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Last Updated: 12/17/08