All that remains: Residual Moments Premiere - Nov 15, 2023

World Premiere – All that remains: Residual Moments

There was a beautiful energy in The Aperture Room in the heart of Toronto’s downtown for the world premiere of All that remains: Residual Moments last week. Gunilla Josephson‘s evocative moving imagery projected on 3 large screens surrounding members of the Thin Edge New Music Collective performing a live soundtrack was truly an immersive and poignant experience. These wonderful feelings were complimented by a large and appreciative audience.

I want to thank all of you who attended and also extend my appreciation to our amazing team who made this presentation happen: Gunilla, Lewis DeSoto, Lisa Horvat, Lillian Ross-Millard, Greg Woodbury, Nathan Bruce, Dennis Patterson, J Ken Rutherford, Jason Ebanks, Mat Keselman, our musicians, Amahl Arulanandam, Sara Constant, Cheryl Duvall, Terry Lim, Michael Murphy, Nathan Petitpas, Aysel Taghi-Zada, Ilana Waniuk, Dobrochna Zubek, and our funders, Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.

All that remains: Residual Moments can be described as more of an exhibition than an event, more of a transformation of time and space than a concert, more of a unifying experience than an installation. This larger-than-life immersive sensory experience utilizes music, video imagery and human presence as the stage for the unveiling of our memories from childhood.

It’s presented with moving image, original instrumental music, live musicians and a designed soundscape.

The first phase of production saw members of Thin Edge filmed improvising musical fragments and in conversation with Gunilla talking about memories of childhood that have influenced their lives.

In collaboration with writer Lewis DeSoto and artist/editor Lillian Ross-Millard, Gunilla edited the visual material into a 60-minute, triptych format [3-part] film.

Residual Moments - Screen Shots

Following Gunilla’s work, I composed a soundtrack featuring a score combining live instrumentation for a quintet (flute-violin-cello-vibraphone-piano) with a fixed electronics part, including excerpts from some of the improvised elements recorded in the 1st phase.

2 weeks ago, I attended a very productive rehearsal with Thin Edge members to put it all together.

Thin Edge New Music Collective - Cheryl Duvall, Terry Lim, Amahl Arulanandam, Aysel Taghi-Zada, Nathan Petitpas

Composer Frank Horvat with the Thin Edge New Music Collective - Cheryl Duvall, Terry Lim, Amahl Arulanandam, Aysel Taghi-Zada, Nathan Petitpas

Thin Edge’s musicians are pros! In order for their live parts to stay in sync with the film and fixed electronics, they have to play along with a click track. Musicians know that that can sometimes be tedious and annoying. But their technical precision and expressiveness for this hour-long piece is amazing!

For our November 15 premiere in Toronto, Thin Edge members played along with the film (the same musicians appearing both in the film and live simultaneously). Rather than in a traditional concert setting, it was wonderful to have it take place in a large open-concept event space. The musicians were in the middle of the room playing along with Gunilla’s film that was projected around the room. The audience was free to walk about, stand, sit, or lie down in any part of the room.

As we see other people recounting their memories, our own memories are evoked and we understand the commonality of human experiences and are transported into an atmosphere that offers release and liberation from memories that subconsciously continually loop in our minds.

My hope is that this iteration of the project will be presented again. I also ambitiously hope to produce a 12-hour version of the work involving more interviews with more musicians at some point in the future. Stay tuned!

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