Names: Babylon Quartet: Kellen McDaniel, Danielle Daoukayeva, William McCleish, Leonid Nikishin Main Subject: Chamber Music Research Supervisors: Renee Jonker, Liesbeth Ackermans Title of Research: Babylon Quartet: Ghosts, Mirrors, and The River: A case study in performance and compositional practices of modern electro acoustic music Research Question: What are some of the important challenges faced in creating and performing works which utilize electronics, and what kinds of performance practices and compositional approaches can be used to mitigate and overcome these challenges? Summary of Results: The use of electronics in music composition and performance continues to expand, both in commercially mainstream and artistically niche genres of music. This presents a growing set of demands on classically trained musicians who wish to perform music which uses electronics. This paper is mainly a primary source documentation of performance techniques, challenges and solutions presented by the members of Babylon Quartet in their preparation and performance of an original work for string quartet involving electronics. The piece was written by violist Kellen McDaniel and his brother Marshall McDaniel. It consists of first hand accounts of all four players as well as the two composers, detailing the process of first premiering the work, and then subsequently revising and adapting the work for future performances, as well as relevant technical explanation and documentation. The goal of this research is to provide insight and practical solutions on how some core challenges of electro-acoustic performance can be overcome from both compositional and performance perspectives. Biography: Babylon Quartet is a string quartet based in The Hague. Playing together for the past three years, they have been honored as recipients of Het Kersjesfonds Strijkkwartetstipendium as well as winning first place De Grote Kammermusik Prijs - De Doelen. They consist of violinists Leonid Nikishin (Russia) and Danielle Daoukayeva (Netherlands), violist Kellen McDaniel (USA), and Cellist William McCleish (Canada). Kellen McDaniel and his brother Marshall McDaniel are a composing duo from Los Angeles, California. They have composed works for the concert hall and theater, as well as film and television.
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