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"Enjoy this most daring pairing of organ with the outside world."
       -- Rani Fischer, American Guild of Organists

Turbulence, divided into three movements, is a celebration of two remarkable sources of sound: pipe organ and amplified stereo electronics.  It is a ten-minute tumultuous collision of apparently conflicting elements. At times, the pipe organ accompanies audio snippets, while at other times, the pipe organ is clearly in the foreground.  Duets also emerge.  For Turbulence, archival recordings by Luc Ferrari provided substantial inspiration.  Since 2011, the Association PRESQUE RIEN has generously made these files available to composers for the biennial PRESQUE RIEN competition.  Turbulence manifests the wonder, drama, humor and playfulness that were integral to Ferrari’s compositions.  The composer is also indebted to Paul Rosas for his expert advice on pipe organ techniques used in Turbulence.

The recording below was made by Steve Glaze of Tone Freq Studios on August 25, 2015, performed by Paul Rosas, Senior Organist for the United Methodist Church of Los Altos. The live premiere performance by Mr. Rosas was a part of the eleventh annual Irregular Resolutions concert on November 21, 2015.


ABOUT THE TITLES: Luc Ferrari source recordings used in each of the three movements inspired their titles:

   1. Pleuvoir et Chuchotements: Rain and Whispers
   2. Mélodie Ondulate et Cristalline: Undulating and Crystalline Melody
   3. Machine en Marche: Machine in Motion

ABOUT THE INSTRUMENT: The pipe organ is a four-manual Allen combined with 43 pipe ranks of Swain and Kates design:

              organ    orsas 

ABOUT THE ELECTRONICS: More than 100 electronic cues were prepared by the composer for this piece. Sound files collected by the Association PRESQUE RIEN are a consequence of their ongoing digitization of Mr. Ferrari’s magnetic tapes. The following recordings are used as source material for Turbulence:

   Bistro – chuchotements filles    
   Bistro – mélodie ondulate et cristalline
   Cliquetis rythmique machine
   Creamaille 88 – machine en marche passant de gauche á droite
   Impro-Micro-Acoustique – Prise de son Originale – grave ondulant
   Labyrinthe portrait – les grenouilles
   Le Petit Train de la Mure – Prises de son juillet 1988 – ambiance machines résonnantes au barrage
   Les Anecdotiques – nappe modulante
   Musique Promenade – elements ponctuels brefs
   Pluie á Eze Septembre 1999
   Toscane 1989 – pluie sur le pare-brise

Cues used in the piece adhere to the historic methods of musique concréte, i.e., modifying these original recordings in order to realize new musical ideas and themes while preserving their original aesthetics.  A variety of old and new methodologies were used to prepare the sounds for Turbulence.

Live performance of Turbulence is accomplished using QLab, software widely used for theatrical performances.  All of the audio cues required for Turbulence, bundled with the QLab performance cue sequence, are available upon request from the composer.