Trans

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Published on: 17 May 2010

Gerd Kühr: Trans, from Revue instrumentale et electronique (2004/5 according to the composer’s site, not 2007 as stated in the video)

Austrian composer Gerd Kühr is a professor of composition at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Graz; he also works as a conductor and once studied with Sergiu Celibidache. Kühr has also taken composition with Hans Werner Henze.

Kühr’s piece Revue instrumentale et electronique is divided into six sections. It is scored for nine spatially divided instrumental groups and electronics.

The transitions between the electronics and live sections is seamless; you are listening and you gradually realize “we are hearing electronic music now” as opposed to the live instruments. Kühr is very effective at devising novel instrumental timbres, such as the palpitating percussion and fleeting winds in the opening “Intro” and in the alien atmosphere of sustained notes in “Trans.”

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