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19.4.05

New Music for New Instruments in Paris

Jean-François Laporte, Flying CanAn article (Marathon de musique contemporaine à Paris, April 19) by Pierre Gervasoni for Le Monde reviews a concert of new music called L'Itinéraire de nuit, which took place at the Cité internationale universitaire de Paris on April 16. The 12-hour marathon of new music began with Canadian composer Jean-François Laporte's Vortex, written for six "flying cans," an instrument that Laporte himself invented. (Laporte is becoming known for his assortment of bizarre instruments, usually crafted out of found objects.) Here is how Gervasoni described the flying can players: "In effect spread throughout the ground and upper floors, they whirled around their heads a curious plastic can with space shuttle feet and a boomerang wing, whose rotations at the end of a string gave birth to one of the most unusual polyphonies, somewhere between a naturalistic bumblebee and a futuristic carillon." The picture shown here is, I think, an example of Laporte's flying can in action.

The concert was a project initiated (and named for) the Ensemble L'Itinéraire, which performed as one of the groups. Gervasoni also described the other pieces presented. Read the whole thing, if you read French.

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