Norwegian Academy of Music
Publications - 2023
Artistic research results from research fellows and externally financed projects.
Holographic Composition Technique
Idin Samimi Mofakham
In the field of photography, the term hologram is defined as: "a three-dimensional image reproduced from an interference pattern produced by a split coherent beam of rays." Relating the above statement to the genre of music, the closest we can come to explaining the hologram is to consider the phenomenon of combination tones. Combination tones are the ghost sounds created in the inner ear when two different tones are played simultaneously.
Holographic Composition Technique is a term I coined specifically for my practice of the compositional path. It is a technique based on two main themes in music that interest me most: psychoacoustics, and the world of microtonality, with the biggest influence being the world of Just Intonation and non-Western tuning systems.
As someone fascinated by physics and mathematics, both psychoacoustics and microtonality are very attractive sources of inspiration. My interest in microtonality encompasses all kinds of approaches: different temperament systems, Just Intonation techniques, non-octave subdivisions or the so-called "traditional non-Western" practices. Nevertheless, I will focus on Iranian microtonality, especially the tuning systems written by Persian polymaths between the 9th and 15th centuries, with a focus on the works of Fārābi (10th century), Ibn Sinā (10th century) and Safiaddin Ormavi (13th century).
This research intends to connect the world of psychoacoustics, the medieval Iranian tuning systems, and the Radif of classical Iranian music, in an attempt to combine them as material for compositional practice. I categorise various tunings of the medieval thinkers and polymaths who were active in the vast territories of the Middle East, and show ways in which this material can be used in contemporary music to create a personal fusion of the manifestations of the Orient and Occident in music.
Henrik Hellstenius, Ellen Kristine Ugelvik, Tanja Orning, Camilla Eeg-Tverbakk, Christian Blom
In the sphere of contemporary composition and performance, the material for composers and musicians is not only sound, but extends to different forms of visuality, objects, movements and language. The Extended Composition project poses some fundamental questions: what new strategies for composition and performance will have to be developed to master the multitude of sign systems emergent from music’s expanded material array? What new significance is emerging from the layers in an extended composition of sound, language and movements, and how do we evaluate it? This presentation contains reflections and presentations of three artistic works done in collaboration between composers, musicians, dancers and other artists. The project group has been Henrik Hellstenius, Tanja Orning, Christian Blom, Ellen Ugelvik and Camilla Eeg-Tverbakk.