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Keo

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Published on Jul 4, 2007

"Keo" is a performance for voice improvisation, sensor instrument Qgo, and live electronics. The author attempted to realize three concepts in this work.
The first is "dual-layered control" by one person. The performer improvises phrases, employing voices of various kinds (e.g. falsetto, shouting, etc.), and provides sound materials to a computer through head-worn microphone. At the same time, he sends commands to the computer to process his voice, using a pair of sensor devices that he wears on his both hands, and controls parameters of several digital sound processing algorithms, such as phase vocoding, granular sampling, pitch shifting, and flanger, in real time. He controls two things simultaneously; sound generation and sound processing. In other words, He can bends or squeeze his voice freely with his hands.
The second is the clear connection between the visuality of the performance and the musical gestures. In almost all parts of the performance, the movement of sensor instrument and musical parameters, such as pitch, density of sound, and dynamics, are clearly connected. If the performer moves his hand even slightly, it influences an aspect of sound obviously. Moreover, these connections are altered several times during the performance. therefore a certain body gesture does not always produce same musical result.
The third is the strong connection between music and theatricality. In several parts of the work, the body motions of the performer is not only controlling sensor devices but also have some theatrical meanings and play an important role in the context of the piece. The hexagonal-shaped sensor device is named "Qgo." An acceleration sensor, an infrared sensor are installed in each box. They detect the distance to the obstacles and tilts of themselves. A micro controller converts voltage from the sensors into MIDI values and sends them to the computer. This device is built by the author and Shingo Inao.

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