Svelt André Ruschkowski

SVELT was composed from March to December 1988 in the studio of the Zeiss-Großplanetarium Berlin, for a special program about the creation and movement of the planetary system. The word svelt is used in the fine arts for the designation of delicate and slender forms. In this sense it used here too — for the description of the sound character in this piece. SVELT was made for performance in the new planetarium in Berlin. 89 loudspeakers, which could be combined into separate groups, were placed in the hemispherical domed performance room. I used for this piece eight groups, placed around the listeners, to allow different placement of the sounds and also movement through space. This — combined with the special design of the sound material — provided a feeling of the great expanse of space. The sound material in this piece is of both electronic and concrete origin. The purely electronic sounds are made with FM synthesis in order to use the advantage of FM synthesis: the diverse influence at the creation of sounds, but with special care to avoid the cliches of FM sound synthesis. The piece is divided into six parts which are connected by short interludes. The whole electronic sound material is generated from 12 different basic sounds. These sounds are distributed in four different pitch classes. Only the few different basic sounds in these four classes are varied. The variation techniques include mostly different types of modulation, extremely slight variations of pitch, or variations of the envelopes. The overlapping, articulation and mixing of these kinds of modification and also the transition between electronic and concrete sounds, are the main compositional elements of the piece. The first performance of the concert version of this piece was on May, 21th 1989 during the 2nd workshop for electroacoustic music in the theater im palast, Berlin.

Source: CECG/GEC, 1989

  • Year of composition: 1988
  • Duration of the submitted work: 12:30
  • Production: Zeiss-Großplanetarium Studio, (Berlin, GDR). Sound Technician: Thomas Graichen

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