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David Eagle - Paths

Program Notes

Paths is a kinetic sound composition (originally a sound installation and live performance) that immerses the listener within a texture of moving sounds – sounds from the environment, imagined sounds, instrumental sounds, voices and spoken words.  They are always moving, following different paths, being transformed along the way, and transforming the listener in the process. 

Where does a circle begin?  In the installation, eight speakers are arranged in a circle around the listeners.  And like a circle – and unlike most compositions – Paths does not have a definite beginning, middle, or end.  The passage of time and music is experienced differently and the expectations of both the listener and the composer are not as conventionally goal-directed. When we walk along a path and listen – for instance, in the mountains or a forest – we do not expect a contrived climax to arrive, rather we experience and immerse ourselves in the environment. This is probably the best way to experience the work, to listen openly and without expectation, to listen both spatially and temporally.

Paths was created as an interactive work with the composer performing on a laptop computer using a sound diffusion system developed in MaxMSP. A visualization map was used to shape sonic gestures and textures, many of them using chance and aleatoric techniques.


David Eagle composes chamber, orchestral and electroacoustic music, and in recent years, has explored computer applications in composition, improvisation, multimedia and sound spatialization. His latest kinetic music compositions use the movement of sound to fundamentally transform the listening experience. On faculty at the University of Calgary , he teaches composition and electroacoustic music and is Director of the Electroacoustic Music Studio and the New Music Ensemble.

Performances in Canada and abroad include Sound Travels - New Adventures in Sound Art, New Music Concerts (Toronto), New Works Calgary, Calgary Philharmonic, University of Alberta, Vancouver New Music, Canadian Electroacoustic Community 'Perspectives' (Montréal), Computer Music 90 (Tokyo), Glenn Gould Conference (Toronto), Tuning of the World (Banff), International Computer Music Conferences 95 & 96, and International Society for Electronic Arts 95, World Saxophone Congress 2000, Mexico-Canada Music Festival 2001 (Mexico City), Open Ears Festival 2003 in Kitchener-Waterloo and Happening Festival 2004 (Calgary).

David Eagle  also performs the aXiO, a new digital instrument designed to allow greater expression in interactive electroacoustic music. He has been composer/performer in residence with New Adventures in Sound Art at the Sound Travels Festivals on Toronto Island and has performed at electroacoustic festivals in Denmark and Rome .

Eagle's work can be heard on New Concert Discs, Clef, UNICAL, isidorart  and ARKTOS.



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