three years of light

A collaboration with composer Nicholas DeMaison. Three Years of Light explores the possibilities of gesture and enactive approaches to composition and performance. We have created a piece for prepared piano, electronics and two performers, one of whom plays at the keyboard and another who prepares and deprepares the piano throughout the piece. Our setup involves an array of microphones that sample sound for processing and spatialization. A video camera arranged with a top-down view of the inside of the piano feeds a computer which captures and analyzes the movements and gestures of the performers. This allows for different regions of the soundboard to be mapped and played, not only by physically manipulating the piano preparations themselves, but also via the movement of hands, arms and body, as they move across the computer’s visual field. For example sound can be spatialized and “thrown” around the room by sweeping one”s arms. A gesture memory system allows for these gestures to be remembered by the computer and referred to later in different ways throughout the piece.

Video from the premier performance, with
Julia DenBoer, piano
Jennifer Torrence, percussion
Jason Ponce, electronics


Three Years of Light from What Where on Vimeo.