Martin Parker
University of Edinburgh


Portfolio, Practice based, composition, concert, sound processing


Scripts is a suite of four concert pieces that can work as a collection of short compositions in their own right or be played amongst other pieces in programmes of extreme and physically taxing music. At the heart of the piece is a real-time sound processing tool that applies sampling and DSP to each instrument individually and in highly varied ways. This tool responds to sound very directly; incoming audio pushes through a landscape of shifting parameters that reconfigure themselves with each note played. As such, the piece is very responsive. All sound spatialisation is ambisonic and can therefore be adapted to any sound system from headphones (for individual rehearsal) up to 16 channels. Scores for the pieces are very simply structured with minimal detail pertaining to what exactly should be played. The scores give scope for the players to adapt their performance to the context of the concert. It is this openness to adaptation that gives the piece its name. Players are asked to interpret their instructions and adjust their playing to the sonic context created by the computer processing, rather like the way actors use a script as the starting point for a performance (Cook, 2014). This means that a very deliberate and carefully formed concept for a piece can exhibit different qualities, colours and player response each time it is performed. The examples submitted show three Scripts alternating between parts of Michael Edwards’s piece for saxophone quartet called Hyperboles 3. Edwards’ piece is long and slow, and Parker identified moments in the piece where the Scripts could be used to change pace, position and concentration. They were configured to work seamlessly between parts of Edwards’s work, yet are distinctly different in approach and concept.

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2 May 2024


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.