Solo Micro-Musical Works in Single Measured Symphonies
The 52 Nanotone Symphonies is a work of expanding and contracting nature, which reflects the paradox of size, length, speed, and tone of a work: a symphony is traditionally a massive orchestral work with many interactive parts, while a tone is an elemental form of sound, at the foundational level of music. This work distorts and challenges those categories, allowing for each measure (in 12 + 4 time) to constitute an entire "symphony" of sound in miniature: using a single piano (keyboard or organ) instead of orchestra. Performers are encouraged to play each as slow or fast as they wish. The ever-expanding tone "size" refers to how a piece may be played--individually once through; with 3-5 second pauses between each measured "symphony" in order to focus on the clarity and expansiveness of micro-orchestral sounds created in each measure and the accompanying pauses, silences, or human participant sounds; or even repeating the piece several times at increasing/decreasing tempi: nanotone, femtotone, attotone, zeptotone, and yactotone. While these "tones" don't actually exist musically, they are meant to convey the fractional nature of sounds toward infinitessimal or extreme limits of music. Pauses between each measured "symphony" will create a distinct experience of "connected detachment," because of the intense shortness of each work, while continuing through the whole series. It may also create an unpredictable tension between various sounds and spaces of human noise, tones, and empty space--with the final measure offering the most room for interpretation, from loudest to quietest sound or silence. (This work was inspired by a comment an audience member had regarding the composer's 24 Preludes for Solo Piano "Voyages d'hiver"--that they were "beautiful but too short!" As a result, the idea came to make a whole host of piano pieces that were EVEN shorter--in the extreme: one measure each!).
Micro-music; Mini Symphonies; Conceptual Music; Piano Solo; Experimental Music;
Audio Arts and Acoustics | Composition | Interdisciplinary Arts and Media | Music Performance | Other Music
Elia, Anthony, "52 Nanotone Symphonies" (2022). Bridwell Library Research. 28.