You are on page 1of 29


Volume One

Collection Musique/Sciences
directed by Jean-Michel Bardez & Moreno Andreatta The Musique/Sciences series contributes to our understanding of the relationship between two activities that have shared intimate links since ancient times: musical and scientic thought. The often-cited Quadrivium (music, astronomy, geometry, and arithmetic) reminds us that, in an age imbued with the spirit of the Gods, it was not uncommon to think of these two modes of thought as twins. During the twentieth century, music and science developed new links, establishing relationships with mathematics and opening new lines of musical research using information technology. Modeling, in its theoretical, analytical and compositional aspects, is more than ever at the center of a rich musicological debate whose philosophical implications enrich both musical and scientic knowledge. The pleasure of listening is not diminished when it is more active, more aware of certain generating ideasau contraire.

Published works G erard Assayag, Fran cois Nicolas, Guerino Mazzola (dir.), Penser la musique avec les math ematiques ?, 2006 Andr e Riotte, Marcel Mesnage, Formalismes et mod` eles, 2 vol., 2006

Forthcoming Moreno Andreatta, Jean-Michel Bardez, John Rahn (dir.), Autour de la Set Theory Guerino Mazzola, La v erit e du beau dans la musique Franck Jedrzejewski, Mathematical Theory of Music


Volume One

Edited by Carlos Agon, G erard Assayag and Jean Bresson

Preface by Miller Puckette

Collection Musique/Sciences

Editorial Board Carlos Agon, Ircam/CNRS, Paris G erard Assayag, Ircam/CNRS, Paris Marc Chemillier, University of Caen Ian Cross, University of Cambridge Philippe Depalle, McGill University, Montr eal Xavier Hascher, University of Strasbourg Alain Poirier, National Conservatory of Music and Dancing, Paris Miller Puckette, University of California, San Diego Hugues Vinet, Ircam/CNRS, Paris Editorial Coordination Claire Marquet Page Layout Carlos Agon and Jean Bresson Texts translated by Justice Olsson Cover Design Belleville

Tous droits de traduction, dadaptation et de reproduction par tous proc ed es r eserv es pour tous pays. Le code de la propri et e intellectuelle du 1er juillet 1992 nautorise, aux termes de larticle L. 122-5, 2e et 3e a), dune part, que les copies ou reproductions strictement r eserv ees ` a lusage du copiste et non destin ees ` a une utilisation collective et, dautre part, que les analyses et les courtes citations dans un but dexemple et dillustration . Toute repr esentation ou reproduction int egrale ou partielle, faite sans le consentement de lauteur ou ayant cause, est illicite (article L.122-4). Cette repr esentation ou reproduction par quelque proc ed e que ce soit constituerait donc une contrefa con sanctionn ee par les articles L. 335-2 et suivants du Code de la propri et e intellectuelle. ISBN 2-7521-0027-2 et 2-84426176-0 c 2006 by Editions DELATOUR FRANCE/Ircam-Centre Pompidou

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume and the Role of Computer Aided Composition Software in the Formalisation of Musical Process
- Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez Abstract. The present article will attempt to illustrate the compositional process of Mauro Lanzas work Aschemblume for nine instruments ensemble (Fl. Cl. Perc. Pno. Vl. Vla. Vc. Cb.). The piece was a commission from the French Culture Ministry and the ensemble Court-Circuit. In the rst part, an introduction to the musical parameters that unify the piece will be presented, as well as a description of the role of OpenMusic in the pre-compositional processes; in the second part the musical material will be analysed with a discussion of their construction in OpenMusic, and nally the fundamental structure of the piece will be described to show how the sections are assembled. The writing of this article was made possible thanks to a close collaboration with the composer. ***


Mauro Lanzas work is characterized by the mental conception of musical ideas followed by a computer aid. The pre-compositional formalisation is a compulsory phase permitting the composer to discern the material that could be quickly produced by the machine. The term musical material will be used to name each minor section possessing autonomous musical characteristics. The composers intervention in the CAC process takes place with the programming of computerised tools that respond to the needs of his musical language. Aschenblume is a German word meaning ashes settling down taking the shape of a ower. The word is taken from a poem by Paul Celan. The literal translation could be Ash ower and its literary context strengthens the semantic connotation of each component, (the owering through the vanishing of ashes). The process applied to the initial material of the piece could be seen as a musical analogy of the word: the piece begins in a rhythmic ostinato that undergoes harmonic and rhythmic disintegration and gradually becomes a sustained chord. Then the material is reiterated several times, but bearing a new musical element at each repetition. The evolution of these new elements leads them to be progressively dissimilar from the initial material; the treatment given to their common musical principles builds up the coherence between them. 65

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

The musical path allows all kinds of interaction between the dierent bodies of musical material; the handling of their interpolation and their contrast becomes the principal axis of tension. The development of all the bearing materials is a disintegration process. An important feature of this process is the gradual reduction of duration of each section until the end of the piece where they are perceived as small fragments, keeping the essential musical elements that characterised them. A brutal and regular pulsation nishes the piece in the form of a collision between the contracted elements.

Pre-compositional process

The formalisation of the compositional process implies a resolution of the principles that link the musical materials used in the piece. The main aspects are as follows: the development of a rhythmic hierarchical language by the polyphonic assembling of rhythmic patterns, the creation of the harmonic eld homogenising the sonority of the piece, the descending melodic shape. Each main body of material is governed by the idea of a melodic descent, each section of the piece is reduced in duration. The harmonic and rhythmic aspects are created almost entirely using OpenMusic; the comprehension of this process is essential to the understanding of the musical materials construction and its development throughout the piece. Therefore, an explanation of the rhythmic and harmonic formalisation by CAC will be presented in the introduction to the analysis of the piece.


The rhythmic hierarchical language by polyphonic assembling of rhythmic patterns

Rhythmic hierarchy and periodic patterns are the main rhythmic aspects developed by Mauro Lanza. The hierarchy can be achieved when some specic points are emphasized in a rhythmic sequence, creating varying levels of importance. The accented points constitute an original rhythmic pattern that arithmetically generates all of the minor rhythmic structures. In Aschenblume, as in other Lanza works, there is a polyphonic treatment of the rhythmic hierarchies, the original rhythmic pattern is highlighted in the points where all voices are assembled; each voice has its own duration and is repeated throughout the whole length of the original pattern. The rhythmic sub patterns of each voice are obtained from a modulo division of the original pattern, that allows sub patterns to be generated, and that coincide with the original pattern onsets. The onsets of the original pattern are expressed in ratios, which are note values measured in relation to the beginning of the pattern that is the point zero. The divisor indicates the division unity and the numerator the position of each onset. For example, in a 21 sixteenths note pattern that has onset the 5th , 13th , 15th and 2st sixteenth note will be represented as follows: 0 5/16 13/16 66 15/16 21/16

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

The possible duration of the derived pattern is expressed also as a ratio and it is said to be a modulo. The numerators of the original pattern onsets are divided by the numerator of the modulo; The remainders of each division are the onsets values that determine the derived pattern, if there are repeated remainders this value has to be taken just once. With a pattern that lasts 8 sixteenth notes the operation will as follows: Original pattern onsets Remainders Sub pattern onsets 0 0 0 5 5 5 13 5 7 15 7 21/8 5 Sub pattern duration

Figure 1. Rhythmic pattern with two sub-patterns periodicities

The composer creates an initial CAC tool in order to accelerate this process. The tool is an OM function called Subpatterns that generates the sub patterns with any modulo and any division unity. The rhythmic density depends on the number of notes in the modulo of a sub pattern, and can also be controlled with another function created by the composer. The function creates some restrictive constraints so as to choose the less dense patterns. In order to solve the constraints the search-engine Pmc-engine (from Mikael Laursons PWConstraints library) is used. This search-engine yields solutions found in a search domain giving preference to the solutions that respond to the constraints. The constraints are rules and heuristic rules; the rules take the sub pattern solutions responding to a simple true or false question, the heuristic rules select the sub patterns according to the desired density value. Then the composer can nd patterns determining the minimum value allowed in a voice and control the number of notes of each sub pattern depending of its density. In some sections of the piece the pitch is also formalised in order to create melodic patterns corresponding with the periodicity of the sub patterns, while the pitch reinforces the original pattern creating a heterophony. Each note of the chosen melody is allocated to each onset of the original pattern, the same notes are then allocated to the reminders of the division. When there are equal values as reminders of dierent divisions and the allocated note is dierent, this value appears in the sub pattern taking only one note from the allocated notes at each repetition. 67

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Original pattern onsets Remainders Notes

0 0 C

5 5 D

13 5 E

15 7 F

21/8 5 G

Sub pattern duration

Sub-pattern modulo Onsets Note

0 C

8 5 DEG

7 F

0 CG

7 1 5 F D

6 E

Figure 2. Heterophony over the rhythmic pattern appeared in the gure 1

Creation of a harmonic eld

The Aschenblumes harmony is obtained completely from two bell-like spectra created by physical modelling synthesis1 . The two instruments employed are a free and a clamped circular plate; their spectra are inharmonic with a huge quantity of non-temperate partials. In order to be used, the partials are approximated into quartertones and the clarinet is tuned a quartertone lower. Tempered instruments such as the piano and some pitched percussion instruments mostly play tempered notes; in the sections where more notes are needed the harmonies are approximated into semitones.

Figure 3. Free circular plate spectra

1 This kind of synthesis permits the creation of virtual instruments starting from their dimensions and the physical properties of their material. The procedure is made possible by the Modalys software, realized at the IRCAM. The composer Mauro Lanza created an interface to control the synthesis from inside OpenMusic.


The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

Figure 4. Clamped circular plate spectra

The harmonic eld obtained is not intended as a musical representation of an acoustic model in the spectral music manner, but to give a homogeneous sonority to the whole piece. Therefore, the spectra becomes the ensemble of notes used in the piece and its coherence of form is due to the organisation of sub-ensembles of partials. Some partials have higher amplitudes depending on which part of the instruments register is sampled. In order to create the partial sub-ensembles, a constraint tool is used to search the instruments points at which there are fewer simultaneously sounding partials. Each one of the points becomes the harmony of a section, and they are played either as chords with their corresponding amplitudes or melodically as a scale for each instrument. The points with common partials are used as the harmony of the related sections of the piece, which gives them harmonic homogeneity.

Figure 5. Enumeration of chords obtained from the partials of dierent points of the instruments


Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Aschenblume musical materials

As we explained in the introduction, new material appears constantly throughout the piece. A description of each section is necessary if the reader is to understand their formal structure.


Material A

The piano presents a homo-rhythm in sixteenth notes accentuating points that shape a melodic descent. The homo-rhythm accelerates while the accents decelerate, because the periods between them are enlarged. This process creates a temporal paradox that will be resolved as a sustained chord. All the other instruments underline the piano accents in triplet subdivision, generating a small gap between each. However, the percussion follows the same pattern as the piano accents. The melodic descent movement is applied to the other instruments in dierent periodicities from that of the piano. To create this material the composer developed a CAC tool, a patch that applies the following process: the harmonic eld is approximated into semitones and ltered by an intervallic structure transposing in chromatic downward steps. Each transposition is arpeggiated downwards avoiding the notes from of the harmonic eld, thus creating an irregular descent. There are two note chords accentuating points of a melodic descent. The ltering process is carried out in the OM patch as well as upon the acceleration of the homo-rhythm. Placing of accents is done manually by the composer. The following step is the extraction of the onsets of the accentuated notes, in order to generate the rhythm for the other instruments. A patch takes these onsets and approximates them into a triplet subdivision, the resulting rhythm being allocated to the ute, clarinet, violin and alto. The percussion accentuates in the same subdivision as the piano, approximately following its melodic descent shape with bongos and congas.

Figure 6. Material A (Meas. 1)


The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

The melodic descent for the other instruments is chosen by the composer from the harmonic eld assigning dierent registers to each instrument and allowing them to have common notes. The number of notes of this descent is progressively reduced until each instrument only has one sustained note, and this procedure leads to the incoming chord. The melodic descent is orchestrated in such a way as to have three periodicity levels. The violin and ute are always have a similarly patterned descent, and notes reduction. The alto and clarinet play the descent in a periodicity that is dierent from the violin and ute. Finally, the heterophony principle is used to allocate some pianissimo descending notes in dierent periodicities for the ute and clarinet.

Figure 7. Melodic descents periodicities for Flute, Clarinet, Violin and Viola (meas. 1)

Throughout the piece the piano harmony evolves, changing the intervallic structure that is transposed, while the other instruments remain harmonically similar to their rst appearance. The sustained arriving chord undergoes a harmonic enhancing metamorphosis; its dynamics and orchestration also evolve, using the amplitudes of the chords extracted from the spectra as a model.


Material B

It is a rhythmic pattern built up with the original pattern and four sub-patterns, each one in a dierent subdivision unity. The double bass and the vibraphone play the original pattern in a regular pulse of 9 sixteenth notes. The piano has a second sub-pattern that uses the same periodicity with an internal division, it doubles the vibraphone at each assembling with the original pattern. The viola and the violin use a triplet sub-division having a periodicity of 10 triplet eighth notes. The clarinet plays a sub-pattern lasting 3 quarter notes and its sub-division unity is the triplet. The ute and the violoncello have a quintuplet sub-division and their periodicity is equal to one half note. The harmony of this section is an orchestration of the 8th chord from the nodes obtained in the spectra. The original rhythmic pattern is characterised by having the fundamental (C ), the 3rd , and the 7th partials (Pno., Vbr.). The rest of the partials are distributed among the other instruments, the voices, rhythmically assembled, use the same notes. Therefore we may conclude that the original pattern is harmonically stable while the sub-patterns are changing, a process that generates an internal evolution of the material very important to its interpolation with the other bodies of material. 71

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Figure 8. Material B (meas. 51)


Material C

It often appears as a transition element, characterised by the rhythmic assembling of all the voices, and the polarisation over the medium and high registers. It has a sextuplet melodic ascending gure built up in a scale whose intervallic structure is identical throughout all octaves. As a result, it is the only section constructed using a harmony out of the spectra. All the voices begin in a dierent sixteenth note of the sextuplet, in order to create polyphony, in which each sixteenth note should have the maximum possible number of simultaneous notes from the scale. The appearance of this material articulates the formal structure of the piece because of how it it diers from the other bodies of material, especially with regard to its homorhythmic polyphony and its ascending character.


Material D

Perceptually, this section is a reminder of the material A, the piano plays a similar homorhythm accentuating the descending notes. The main dierences lie in the polyphonic and rhythmic treatment given to the other voices: polyphonically the dierences lie in the instruments playing in canon with the piano; rhythmically they arise from a common sixteenth note unit division throughout all the voices. 72

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

Figure 9. Material C (meas. 125)

The computer tools initially apply the lter to the harmonic eld polarising around the two highest notes of the chord 2. The composer manually chooses the accents that in this case accelerate until they become constant eighth notes, whereas the homo-rhythm remains in sixteenth notes throughout the section. The appearance of the instruments follows an asymmetrical four voice canon played simultaneously by the violin and the viola, twelve quarter notes after by the ute and the glockenspiel, the violoncello joins twenty-three quarter notes after the piano entry. The rhythm is obtained from the piano accents that are taken as onsets and augmented in dierent proportions for each instrument. The used proportions are irregular and are approximated into sixteenth notes, which are applied as subdivision unit. The melodic descent is also used in instruments that are perceived as an irregular echo of the piano accents. In order to polarise the harmony completing Chord 2, it is formed by the gradual reduction of the descending melody until each voice has just two notes.

Figure 10. Rhythmic structure of Material D canon


Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

The nal part is the most developed element of this section; in the rest of the piece it evolves becoming a constant sixteenth note pattern where the two highest notes are alternated. Each note is harmonised with the chord notes played by each instrument with its respective register in such a way that the highest notes of each voice are simultaneous. The same is applied to the lowest notes. This fast alternation of high and low register mostly emerges at the end of the piece, sometimes transposed or harmonically enriched. In the formal scheme it is named D.

Figure 11. Polarisation over Chord 2 in the Material D (Meas. 91)


Material E

Constructed with the rhythmic pattern tool, this section appears usually as a transition between two sections. Using the chord 27 as its harmony, its principal characteristic is the ute and the double bass sustaining the outer notes while the rest of the ensemble plays the rhythmic pattern and sub-patterns. The original pattern appears in the cowbells over the fundamental of the chord, it has a regular periodicity of 7 sixteenth notes. The sub patterns are individual for each instrument, which means that they are not doubled. The violin and the viola are sub-divided in half note quintuplets, with a 9 and 8 quintuplet eighth note periodicity respectively. The violoncello and the clarinet are subdivided in triplets and their periodicities are 11 and 12 triplet eighth notes. The piano does not have a regular periodicity; its role is to 74

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

provide a link to the previous section.

Figure 12. Material E (Meas. 137)


Material F

A contrasting element appears with this material, which consists of a rhythmic unication of the entire ensemble undergoing a deceleration. This is a very short section that introduces a new element, by way of dynamical and orchestration contrast. Therefore, it has great importance in the formal articulation. The tool develops this material by expanding a spectrum that is contracted in the lower part of all registers; the computer contracts the given chord in the lower register, subsequently, the chord is gradually transposed towards its original register. The rhythmic deceleration is a simple interpolation between two rhythmic values, always begining with sixteenth notes, and the nal value depending on the following section. The resulting rhythm has a regular pulsation gradually transformed into syncopations, creating a special tension and introducing a new element.


Material G

It is similar to Material C in many aspects: it has a homo-rhythmic quintuplet subdivision unit for all the playing instruments; each instrument begins at a dierent note of the quintuplet, creating the same polyphonic eect that appeared in Material C. 75

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Figure 13. Material F (Meas. 163 )

The main dierence is harmony. In this case the ascending movement occurs over a B arpeggio, the clarinet part distorts the harmony with microtonal neighbour notes that are gradually eliminated to reach a sustained B unison in all instruments. It is also a reminder of the disintegration that occurred in Material A.

Figure 14. Material G (Measure 167)


The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

The treatment of timbre is unique to this material because of the absence of piano and pitched percussion, as well as the use of string harmonics amalgamated with woodwinds in the high register.


Material H

This section is characterized by a rhythmic pattern. The double bass rasps out the lowest note of the spectra and the ute plays the highest note in this section, accentuating the original pattern, which has a periodicity of 8 quintuplet eighth notes. The violoncello plays a sub-pattern with the same periodicity as the original, whereas the melodic treatment generates an internal subdivision. The viola also accentuates the original pattern in sixteenth notes creating a little gap. The triplet subdivision is applied to the violin, clarinet and piano, the latter being doubled by a glockenspiel. Each instrument has a dierent periodicity: 5 eighth triplet notes for the violin, 21 eighth triplet notes for the piano, clarinet and glockenspiel. Chord 30, obtained from the clamped circular plate, is used in this section with a strong emphasise on E. The highest notes are placed just after the original pattern accent. As a consequence, iambic polyphony is created with the short note in the low register and the long one in the high register. This idea is used as a principle to engender and develop new materials such as D and J.

Figure 15. Material H (182)

Two minor materials appear as a variation of Material H. The rst one (H) presents an acceleration the original pattern of Material H and a change of its subdivision unity into sixteenth notes, the main similarity being the continuous gathering of the double 77

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

bass and the ute, even if the raspy E note played by the double bass subtly becomes a harmonic two octaves higher, recalling Material B. The second one (H) seems to form a hybrid with Material E, because of the appearance of an accentuated C sharp note in cowbells, double bass and piano. However, the harmonic in the double bass and iambic character link it with Material H.


Material I

In this material the heterophony is much more agrant, played over a descending melody. Not all the instruments play it in unison but in microtonal approximations, yielding a richer sonority. Only the double bass and the cowbells play the structural melody over the original pattern, the periodicity of each instrument is independent and is constantly changed at each appearance of the material.

Figure 16. Heterophony in Material I (272)


Material J

Using a lot of notes from the free circular plate spectra, the lower partials are grouped as a sort of cluster strongly attacked by the piano and lower strings with a Bart ok pizzicato. Immediately after this, a longer high chord ensues and develops the iambic idea set forth 78

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

in Material H. The high notes will gradually be extended in a melodic descent or in overblown descending notes. Normally attributed to the ute, here they are played as a strings glissando. This procedure is often applied to create interpolation with other material.

Figure 17. Material J (291)



Interpolation is a transition between two musical situations. In this piece it becomes a very important bridge between bodies of material. Elements from the incoming section are mixed in with elements from the outgoing section. This gathering process is gradual and leads to the complete transformation of the outgoing section into the incoming one. A dierent kind of interpolation occurs, depending on the characteristics of the sections. Some specic examples are presented below to explain how the material is assembled. In Measure 121, interpolation occurs between Material A and Material C. The procedure starts when the accentuated notes of Material A are followed by sextuplet ascending notes. It begins by adding the rst sextuplet note to Material A, then grows note by note into a complete ascending scale of Material C in each instrument. Another striking example appears in Measure 286, in an interpolation between Material C and J. One note is subtracted from the ascending scale of Material C to only keep two notes, one lower than the other. The orchestration is reduced to three instruments: 79

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Figure 18. Interpolation between Material A and Material C (121)

a violin, clarinet and viola. Each begins at a dierent beat of the sextuplet, the rhythm decelerates and the lower notes gradually assemble at the same point of beat and the higher ones at the subsequent point of beat. Simultaneously, the interval between the two notes grows in a contrary motion, while the rest of the ensemble appears and reinforces the process rhythmically and melodically up to the arrival of material J. Yet another interpolation type is to be found in Measure 232 between Materials J and D. In this case, after the attack over the high notes of Material J, the descending intervallic structure of the piano in Material D gradually lengthens, as do the ute and string canons.

General structure of the piece

The original project of the piece is to gradually reduce the length of the materials. This process is not always regular because the composer has the subjective time perception of each sub-section in mind. The length of each sub-section depends on the quantity of material played in them, as well as how they are connected. The structure of the piece possesses a special unity. It also has a formal hierarchy built in three dierent levels of segmentation. Firstly, the form of the piece is segmented into three, each segment being characterised by specic material and processes. Secondly, there are sub-sections that bring together elements of material that do not contrast with each other, either because there of a succession of similar material, or because there is interpolation among the elements. Finally, a local level is marked out by the incoming material, previously described in Aschenblume Musical Materials. The formal schemas presented below show the three levels of segmentation. The main section is divided in sub-sections. The measures at which they occur and their duration 80

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

Figure 19. Interpolation between Material C and Material J (286)

Figure 20. Interpolation between Mat eriel J and Mat eriel D (232)

in ratios are specied underneath. The third level shows the materials of each sub-section with arrows between those that are interpolated. Here is an example of their schematic representation. 81

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Section Measures Sub-sections Measures Duration in ratios Materials

Table 1. Formal scheme of the piece

1 1-19 74/4 A

1st SECTION 1-162 2 3 20-41 42-67 83/4 + 1/8 102/4 A A A B A

4 68-77 40/4 A C

5 78-93 763/4 + 1/8 D

6 94-110 67/4 + 1/8 D A

1st SECTION 1-162 7 8 111-119 120-129 36/4 40/4 A B A C

9 130-137 32/4 D B

1st SECTION 1-162 10 11 138-153 154-162 64/4 35/4 E A A E

Table 2. Formal scheme of the rst section


1st Section (1-181)

It shows the rst disintegration process undergone by Material A, which is repeated once without any modications. At its third appearance the materials B, C, D and E are gradually introduced by interpolation inside the process. This rst section is divided in 11 sub-sections, each of them having interpolation between two or three bodies of material. The initial disintegration process of A can be time stretched, from the 3rd sub-section where B is introduced, then the process occurs from the 4th to the 6th sub-sections and nally from the 7th to the 10th . The time reduction of sub-sections is irregular, due to the introduction of new materials within. Nevertheless, there is more material in less time, which means that they are gradually undergoing a time reduction.


2nd Section

The presentation of Material F articulates the piece. After it appears, the process changes and the material made up by rhythmic patterns such as B, E, I, H occur frequently. They 82

The Genesis of Mauro Lanzas Aschenblume...

12 163-169 F G

2st SECTION 163-314 13 14 15 170-181 182-184 185-191 D C H B C

16 191-192 H H A

17 203-207 A I

2st SECTION 163-314 18 19 208-212 213-238 B C F C J-D 2st SECTION 163-314 22 23 24 264-271 271-275 275-281 K I B I B I D 2st SECTION 163-314 27 301-314 J F H H K

20 239-258 D C

21 259-263 H E

25 282-292 F C

26 293-300 F A

Table 3. Formal scheme of the second section

are generally bridged by short appearances of the material elements developed in the rst section. The sub-sections become gradually shorter and the quantity of materials interpolated inside them increases. This means that the materials undergo a noticeable reduction in length. The main process after Material F is the assembling of materials that possess special tension, released over louder materials such as H or J at the end. Between subsections 12 and 15, it nally achieves a total release over material A. Its duration is reduced gradually throughout its appearance inside the sub-sections 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27. Between sub-sections 21 to 24, the materials with rhythmic patterns quickly succeed each other, and nally arrive at material I, which generates a sort of rhythmic and melodic unication of the ensemble by its hetereophonic character. This unication is perceived as a point of release for the entire piece.


3rd Section

The length of the material is reduced so as to complete contract the material and bring it together in a single entity that possesses characteristics from all. The piece nishes with a strong and regular pulsing beat, the result of the total contraction of all elements. The sub-sections are no longer than 31 quarter notes, which are quickly reduced to an average of 4. When this happens, there is only one body of material left in each subsection, strongly contrasted with the others. Consequently this section is divided into several smaller sub-sections that are juxtaposed until maximum reduction is achieved. Finally in measure 417 a new body of material arises out of this contraction process. It 83

Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

possesses a rhythmic pattern, and all the instruments have the same subdivision unit. The constant pulsation is progressively announced by piano clusters and a Bart ok pizzicato, both recalling Material J. It nally arrives in measure 427 and creates a tension that is suddenly stopped.


As mentioned in the introduction, the purpose of this article is not the detailed description of technical procedures used when programming OpenMusic tools. Rather, this article emphasizes the remarkable advances in algorithmic procedures, in obtaining expressive and artistic results. Composers generally employ constraints as a tool for composition, however in Lanzas piece the use of the computer accelerates the compositional process. The generation of hierarchical rhythmic structures is a new development in the subject of Computer-Assisted Composition. The composer has managed to open a new avenue of exploration through the control of a rhythmic generator using melodic constraints, and has achieved signicant results. The value of this piece may also lay in the fact that the formalisation principles are perceived as homogeneous and musical, in turn shedding light upon the global formal structure. The present article has described these principles and the ways in which they are applied with each body of material. The purpose is to point out CAC the forethought that was applied when developing a model for programming tools. The model then became part of the musical language that the composer has used for more recent pieces. It is fair to say that CAC procedures are developed as an extension of the composers musical language.


Juan Camilo Hern andez S anchez

Born in Bogota, Colombia in 1982. He began by playing traditional Colombian music, moving to jazz, rock and classical music. He studied composition for two years at Javeriana University with Harold Vasquez C. and Marco Suarez. He won the Colombian Cultural Ministry National Competition which allowed him to come to France to continue his studies. In France he has studied with Jean Luc Herv e at Nanterre Conservatoire and Evry University where he was awarded a Maitrise for his paper Formalization In The Compositional Process. In 2003 he studied at the CCMIX (Ianis Xenakis Music Creation Centre) with Gerard Pape, Bruno Bossis, Jean-Claude Risset, Curtis Roads, Agostino di Scipio among others (composers as well as software developers). He has also studied with Brien Ferneyhough, Luca Francesconi and Philippe Leroux at Royaumont Foundation where the piece An eantir was premiered. Since 2004 he has studied composition with Philippe Leroux at Blancmesnil National School. His pieces have been played mostly in the Forum De La Jeune Creation organized by the New Music International Society, 2002 Sin Aliento, 2003 Vestiges du r eve, 2004 Eblouir, as well as at the CCMIX in the Rencontres D Automne Transmutaci on cinem atica.