Live Performance at The New Theatre, Dublin

Document Type



This item is available under a Creative Commons License for non-commercial use only


Performing arts studies

Publication Details

Life performance at the New Theatre, Dublin, 6th April, 2012.


Solo Performance for bass clarinet and live electronics New Theatre, Temple Bar, Dublin | Good Friday 6th April 2012 Live Visuals by Donal Dineen and Hector Castillo | Duration 20mins.


This performance was conceived as an open ended opportunity to perform with my most comprehensive Max patch to date. Comprehensive in the sense that the patch included 8 discrete processing effects with a large amount of variable parameters and also included optional random processes. Performing with a large set of possible sonic options increases the potential palette of the music. It also demands more responsibility in terms of artistic choice. In fact many of the effect modules remained unused throughout the performance and much of the music used digital processing only sparingly.

The performance used delay lines to create texture (either rhythmic or drone) and I then improvised over this on bass clarinet.


Using closed delay lines (effectively a loop) I create a gritty textural rhythmic figure which serves as a bedrock at the start of the piece upon which to improvise. I also set up a drone in Bb, which is used to establish a firm tonal centre. The improvisation stays largely within a Bb major tonality, with a rubato time feel. The textural loop continues until 3:25 when low pass filters cut the energy level of the background processes and the bass clarinet assumes a more central role. The improvisation at this point becomes urgent and more extended techniques are used. At 6:20 a new textural loop is introduced and the ‘triple-delay’ process is used which creates fragments of clarinet recordings at various speeds. I also use a harmonizer in this section and set up a new loop at 7:45 (asynchronous to preceding loops), creating a strongly deliniated rhythmic pattern using tongue slap. This new loop continues and provides a rhythmic lift encouraging the bass clarinet to create denser lines. By 9:00 the piece slows down and the dynamics become quieter, effectively serving as a long fade out. All electronic processes fade out and the bass clarinet plays a rhythmic multiphonic line imitating some earlier electronic sounds ending at 10:04.