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Interviews by John Palmer

Since 1997, composer John Palmer has interviewed several musicians involved with electroacoustic music in various European cities and centres. The interviews have been published in several music journals in Europe and the USA and give insight — from the candid and anecdotal to the analytical — into the activities, æsthetics, working methods and personal interests of the interviewees: composers, sound technicians and more.

In Conversation with Lawrence Casserley

Casserley’s development as a performer and composer, and his subsequent involvement in the improvisation scene of the 1960–70s, the development of his Signal Processing Instrument are the topics of this interview, along with the creative process, and the changing technological resources and limitations of a number of his works. 2001.

Interview with Simon Emmerson

Author of Living Electronic Music, Emmerson allows performers to have an active role in his work — composition is a collaboration with performers. He talks about his teaching and writing activities and gives a broad overview of the different phases of is work over the past 35 years. June 2008.

In Conversation with Luc Ferrari

Ferrari talks candidly about his studies, his contact with Varèse, the influence of serialism, musique concrète and Bartók on his work, and his experiences in Darmstadt. Some comparisons are drawn between his compositional approach for instrumental and for electroacoustic works. At the composer’s home in Paris, 6 May 1999.

In Conversation with Vinko Globokar

Palmer discusses notions of communication, drama and semantics also (but not only) in conjunction with the use of electronic instruments in Globokar’s music. Models and symbols of communication are used, reviewed and questioned in a number of his works, notably the Discours series. At the Electronic Studios of the Technical University, Berlin, 6 September 1999.

High Spirits with Jonty Harrison

A bit of insight into differences in Jonty Harrison’s compositional output over the years, as well as a look at the founding and development of BEAST. He comments on the link between his music and Schaefferian ideas of musique concrète and how his work diverges from these ideas. 2002.

In Conversation with Jonathan Harvey

In much of Harvey’s work — from early works using voice through his work in the 80s at IRCAM — extra-musical sources, sprituality and mysticism are important elements inspiring his creativity. “We can only perceive what we know how to perceive.” Early 1999.

In Conversation with Folkmar Hein

The beginnings (1954) and history of the Electronic Studio of the Technical University in Berlin; its role in the production of Stockhausen’s Osaka work, the interpretive role of the Tonmeister; the “international” character of today’s electroacoustic practitioners. Electronic Studio of the Technical University, Berlin, 1999.

In Conversation with Nuria Schoenberg Nono

Nuria Schoenberg Nono talks about her father’s life in America as a composer and educator, meeting Nono in Europe, the founding and maintenance of the Nono-Archives in Venice, the “performance” of notated electroacoustic pieces and Nono’s late works with live electronics. At the Luigi Nono Archives, Venice, 6 September 1999.

Encounter with Daniel Teruggi and the GRM in Paris

Teruggi addresses the impact of cultural background on one’s artistic activities, and offers some reflections on the different relationship a composer has to electroacoustic and instrumental works, as well as a discussion around Syrcus and other works, and an overview of the activities and development of the Groupe de recherches musicales. Paris, November 1997.

Other Articles by John Palmer

“Introduction to ‘Images of the Mind’” (1997). Paper given at the 1997 KlangArt International Congress “New Music & Technology, Osnabrück, Germany. Published in Musik und Neue Technologie 3: Musik im virtuellen Raum (Bernd Enders, ed.). Osnabrück: Universitätsverlag Rasch, 2000.

“Conceptual Models of Interaction: towards a perceptual analysis of interactive composition” (1997–98). Paper given at the 1997 Sonic Arts Network Conference, University of Birmingham, UK, 10–12 January 1998. Published in the Seamus Journal vol. XIV/1 (Summer 1999).

“Perceptual Abstraction and Electroacoustic Composition” (1998). Paper given at the 1998 Seamus Conference, Dartmouth College NH, USA, 16–18 April 1998. Published in the Seamus Journal vol. XIII/2 (Fall 1998).

“Listening: Towards a new awareness of a neglected skill” (1997). Paper for the Hey Listen! International Conference on Acoustic Ecology, Stockholm, 9–13 June 1998. Published by the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, June 1998.

“Which Global Music?” (1999). Paper commissioned by and given at the 1999 Klangart Congress, Osnabrück, Germany, June 1999. Published in Musik und Neue Technologie 4 (Bernd Enders, ed.). Osnabrück: Universitätsverlag Rasch, 2002.

A list of interviews, articles and books by the author is available on his website.

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