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Conference of the Birds Part I. Intro, Stillness, Authenticity

10 September 2015

Jean-David Caillouet, Dieter Mack and Anothai Nitibhon, Curators


Last year’s symposium at PGVIM aimed at exploring the complex perceptual and aesthetic boundaries between various modes of musical expression. The questions asked were: What is New ? What is Authentic ? What is Classic ? It is clear that there can be no absolute answers to any of those interrogations but that we can rather consider all forms of human expression as being inherently tied to the temporal and cultural contexts they evolve in. 

What was considered ‘popular’ yesterday is labelled ‘classical’ tomorrow and what is new in Singapore might already be out of fashion in St. Petersburg. One musician might try to achieve ‘authenticity’ within a musical context that belongs to a time and geographical location that is totally foreign to theirs while ignoring other musical styles that are rooted deeply within the soil of their native land. In the current globalised context, everyone of us can choose to explore our own local cultures as well as that of other parts of the world. We can decide to investigate the musical past as well as the music of today. 

We are all, indeed, migrating birds singing in the middle of a very large forest of possible futures. In spite of such an encompassing availability, an artist shall never forget his/her responsibility. We should always reconsider the context of something that we use. We should take care that those numerous possibilities of borrowings, combinations etc. never lead to an undifferentiated melting-pot. Diversity and mutual acceptance of difference are still crucial aspects of humanity. Combining acoustic and electronic music, visuals and rituals, notations and improvisations, this eclectic evening of sound making featured contributions by Dieter Mack and the PGVIM students, Peter Edwards & Max Riefer as the duet Zero Crossing, Kim Ngoc Tran, Anant Narkkong, Damrih Banawitayakit, Supreeti Ansvananda, Saowakhon Muangkruan, Watchara Pluemyart. Watchara Pluemyart and jean- David Caillouët. 

The Conference Of The Birds Part I: I N T R O ( Featuring David Attenborough exerpts from ‘The Life Of Birds’ ) ‘Each kind of bird listens to its own particular section of the sound spectrum. His mate like many will be impressed by the originality and complexity of his song. He may sing this song over 500,000 times in a season. 

By late springs, migrants have arrived from Southern europe and Africa and are adding their voice to the chorus. He’s like a Jazz singer, continually improvising and different males develop devellop different singing styles.’ 

S T I L L N E S S: 

Damrih Banawitayakit, Oboe 

Worapong Pimsen, Flute

Supreeti Ansvananda, French Horn 

Oranich Thongsuwan, Piano 

Anant Narkkong, Thai Fiddle (Saw Uu)  

Jean-David Caillouët, Composition, Soundscapes, Visuals and Live Electronics

Authenticity ? 

Dieter Mack, speaker  

“Authenticity denotes a critical quality of perception contents that presupposes the opposition of illusion and reality as a possibility of deception and forgery. (…) The separation of the authentic from the supposedly real or the fake may be seen as a specific human form of world- and self-knowledge. ” (…) 

“Authentic art can only exist, if the truth about that wrong reality is able to resist that situation with the expression of “untransfigured suffering” (…). The inhumanity of art must go beyond the inhumanity of the world, in favour of humanity itself.” (Adorno, Theodor W.: Philosophie der Neuen Musik, Frankfurt 1972 (1949), page 126) Visual Mapping: W.etc…  

ธัชวงศ์ ศิริสวัสดิ์, Camera 

Prateep Nara Jattanakul, Sound Recording 

Jean-David Caillouët, Editing, Mixing and Mastering 

Recorded live at PGVIM, Bangkok. 10.9.15 

This event was curated by Jean-David Caillouet, Anothai Nitibhon and Dieter Mack.

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