Astray, for double duo, op. 50 (1983)
Horaţiu Rădulescu , piano [sound icon]
Daniel Kientzy, sopranino saxophone, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, bass saxophone
Astray was composed for the Roma Villa Medici Musica Festival where it premiered in 1984. The score consists of 81 paintings using symbols from ancient languages. These 81 micro-music entities were photographed and projected as slides during the performance. In addition to its ancient alphabet symbol, each image contains precise indications for the two players: the saxophone player performs on six saxophones (bass, barytone, tenor, alto, soprano, sopranino) which hang from a frame, the other player performs on a Sound Icon [a grand piano laying vertically on its side, with the strings played by bowing.]
This duo plays simultaneously with another identical duo. Both duos perform the same score, but at different speeds. The first duo performs the score twice: slowly at first, faster the succeeding time the second duo performs the score once during the same time span very slowly.
All sounds notated in the score are performed live and are not electronically modulated. The cause (sound source) and the effect (sound parameters) are rendered unrecognizable by the special techniques of sound production.
In this particular studio recording, the two duos were recorded in playback with Daniel Kientzy and the composer. For a concert performance, 4 to 7 players are required (The Sound lcons (3 & 2) require 5 players); the two duos are disposed around the audience. The score, projected from slides, contributes to the visual environment. --Horaţiu Rădulescu
Art by Miriam Aroeste