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(Duration: 33.53) (It is recommended that the video is viewed in full screen mode)
This video essay draws on analytical materials originally published in Gorton & Östersjö (2020), and theoretical ideas developed in Clarke et al. (2017) and Gorton & Östersjö (2016 and 2019).
List of figures used in the video essay
Figure 1: the ‘discursive voice’. Adapted from Gorton and Östersjö (2019). Shown at 07:53.
List of video examples used in video essay
Video example 1: David Gorton and Stefan Östersjö working in Malmö on 10 June 2010 (the ‘Malmö Sessions’; see Clarke et al. (2017) and Gorton & Östersjö (2016)). Shown at 01:17
Video example 2: extract from David Gorton’s Forlorn Hope, recorded by Stefan Östersjö at the Malmö Academy of Music on 13-14 August 2015. Shown at 01:50.
Video example 3: David Gorton and Stefan Östersjö working in Cambridgeshire on 27 January 2014. Shown at 09:49.
Video example 4: private run-through of David Gorton’s Cerro Rico, Mieko Kanno (soprano violin) and Stefan Östersjö (charango), recorded at the Inter Arts Center, Malmö, 18 October 2017. Shown at 10:45
Video example 5: Mieko Kanno and Stefan Östersjö working in Malmö on 16 October 2017. Shown at 16:42
Video example 6: Mieko Kanno, Stefan Östersjö, and David Gorton working in Malmö on 17 October 2017. Shown at 23:19.
Video example 7: Mieko Kanno, Stefan Östersjö, and David Gorton working in Malmö on 17 October 2017. Shown at 25:25.
Mieko Kanno (soprano violin) and Stefan Östersjö (charango)
Private run-through recorded at the Inter Arts Center, Malmö, Sweden, 18 October 2017 (Duration: 15.26)
In this exposition, Mieko plays an instrument by Joris Wouters, who follows Hutchins’ models. The Edinburgh set has also inspired Mieko to lead a project in producing a digital application: the Octet Violins software applies impulse responses taken from the set held in the Edinburgh Reid Museum to an input signal (such as that from an electric violin). The responses can be combined and modified to create a virtual (and imagined) body for the electric instrument. See Harker, Kanno & Newton (2016).
The charango is an octave guitar, built either from armadillo shells (charango de quirquincho) or from a single wood block (charango de madera). This instrument has often been referenced as an example of musical acculturation, since its creation is generally regarded as being a direct result of the encounter between Iberian and Andean cultures through colonization. It is reminiscent of both the Spanish vihuela and the guitarra espanola, two instruments that were brought to Latin America by the conquistadores (Baumann, 2004).
The city of Potosí, whose silver mines in the Cerro Rico mountain became a central source for the growing wealth of the Spanish empire, starting in the early 1570s, hosted guest workers, mitayos, from villages up to hundreds of miles away (Brown, 2012). These migratory influxes made the city a hotspot for intercultural encounters. There is no evidence concerning the earliest history of the charango, but Potosí is commonly regarded as the site where it emerged as a folk music instrument while, at the same time, carrying many features shared with Iberian plucked instruments (Baumann, op. cit.). They all have double courses and still, today, the most common tuning of the charango retains the principles of tuning of the guitarra espanola, such as described in 1650 by Athanasius Kircher (Baumann, op. cit.).
While the early stages of the process of acculturation tended to be characterised by the spread of Iberian instruments, and the adaption of these instruments to the Andean context, Baumann argues that this tendency gave way to a later phase in which one may observe “an endogenous innovation in the involvement with the acculturated musical instrument. The instrument is so-to-say integrated and developed from then on into an icon that no longer refers to an acculturated instrument but rather a new, independent product, in this fall [sic – probably ‘into this category falls’] the charango as [the] national instrument of Bolivia” (Baumann, op. cit.).
Stefan acquired his first charango in the late 1990’s and, since then, has used the instrument in projects with composers from Latin America, the US and Europe, as well as in free improvisation in many different contexts and with different ensembles.
Baumann, M. 2004. The Charango as Transcultural Icon of Andean Music. TRANS (8). Retrieved from http://www.sibetrans.com/trans/articulo/192/the-charango-as-transcultural-icon-of-andean-music
Brown, J. S., Collins, A., & Duguid, P. 1989. Situated cognition and the culture of learning. Educational researcher, 18(1), 32-42.
Brown, K. W. 2012. A History of Mining in Latin America: From the Colonial Era to the Present. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press
Clarke, E. F., Doffman, M., Gorton, D., & Östersjö, S. 2017. Fluid practices, solid roles? The evolution of Forlorn Hope. In E. Clarke & M. Doffman (eds.), Creativity, Improvisation and Collaboration: Perspectives on the Performance of Contemporary Music (pp. 116-135). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Cook, N. 2018. Music as Creative Practice. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Cumming, N. 2000. The Sonic Self. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press.
Gorton, D. 2018. Cerro Rico for violin (or soprano violin) and charango (2017). Berlin: Verlag Neue Musik.
Gorton, D. & Östersjö, S. 2020. Negotiating the Discursive Voice in Chamber Music. In C. Laws (ed.) Performance, Subjectivity, and Experimentation (pp. 53-78). Orpheus Institute Series. Leuven: Leuven University Press.
Gorton, D. & Östersjö, S. 2019. Austerity Measures I: performing the discursive voice. In C. Laws, W. Brooks, D. Gorton, Nguyễn Thanh Thủy, S. Östersjö, and J. J. Wells, Voices, Bodies, Practices: performing musical subjectivities (pp.29-82). Orpheus Institute Series. Leuven: Leuven University Press.
Gorton, D. & Östersjö, S. 2016. Choose your own adventure music: on the emergence of voice in musical collaboration. Contemporary Music Review, Vol. 35, No. 6, 579-598.
Harker, A., Kanno, M. & Newton, M. 2016. Octet Violins (Modeling a virtual Violin). Software application, University of Huddersfield, http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/31506/