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when icarus fell, was there a splash?

Part I

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Estimated Duration
20 - 25min

ISMN : 979-0-2325-6509-5

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Notes on this piece

Excerpt from in-progress evening-length monodrama for Toby Thatcher and Zeitgeist.

Program Notes:
"A radio is a device that conduces the invisible or theoretical into a perceivable or physical manifestation of itself. It makes all the unknown knowledge which permeates the universe, as radio waves do, briefly apparent. The conceit behind this piece is that one can be driven literally out of one’s mind by these momentary glimpses of the truth, since after witnessing the horror of the cluttered, entropic tendencies of the universe towards meaninglessness, it is impossible to return to our false reality with the repercussions, the resonance of truth still ringing in our ears.

Frank Olson was a man who plunged to his death from a 10th story window shortly after being dosed, unwillingly and unwittingly, with an ungodly amount of LSD. He was not the first, only, or last victim of a decades-long CIA experiment which:
1) developed out of the adoption of torture techniques used by the Axis Powers in their death camps in Poland and Manchuria during World War II

2) sought to develop the biological weapon of mind control via psychotropic drugs, to be used against the USSR, which the US military-industrial complex, drunk on the triumphant assumption of unconditional superiority, believed to be the ultimate evil, requiring destruction at any moral cost

3) was referred to in the 1950s (though it took many shapes, intentions, and names over the years) as Project MKULTRA, spearheaded by a biochemist named Sydney Gottlieb.

A requiem is a musical setting of the Christian mass which commemorates the dead. It can also refer to any kind of dirge, lament, prayer, kaddish, or chant that invokes the idea of death as a not an experience or location but as the reception of ultimate silence:

repose from the noise, relief from the blinding epiphanies that drive us mad.

This piece seeks to listen to and represent all of the above. Though there is no story, there is a narrative; though there is no setting, there is a time and a place; though there is no character, there is a text, of which all the performers are a collective manifestation.  Structurally, the piece develops in episodes, over the course of which the rate of “tuning in” increases to such a rapidity that it impels

only one solution: defenestration. The remainder of the piece is the suspended moment in time between a person and the pavement.

Please note that this piece is an excerpt: it represents approximately the 1st of 15 movements which will ultimately comprise an evening-length work commissioned by Toby Thatcher for Zeitgeist.

-Maya Miro Johnson

November 21st, 2019"
Flute|Oboe|Trumpet|Horn (French Horn)|Soprano voice|Violin|Cello|Real-time electronics|Radio (4)
Recorded at the Curtis Institute of Music featuring Alize Rozsnyai and Maya Miro Johnson
Score Details
Format - Undefined
Pages - 78
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