Golan Levin and Collaborators

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Complete “Ursonography” performance video now online

1 January 2009 / announcement, performance, site_update, thanks

The work isn’t finished until it’s documented, a friend of mine used to say. Thus I’m delighted to announce that a complete performance of “Ursonography” (my live-typography performance with virtuoso sound-poet Jaap Blonk) is now hosted online at Vimeo. This is an authoritative documentation of our February 2007 concert at the STUK center in Leuven, Belgium. Jaap Blonk performs Kurt Schwitters’ 1932 Ursonate poem completely from memory, while all of the projected typography is generated in real-time and synchronized with his voice by my custom interactive software.

If you’re not familiar with the Ursonate, it’s a half-hour of rigorously patterned nonsense, and a landmark of 20th-Century Dadaism. Jaap Blonk has included the Ursonate in his repertoire for more than 20 years, and his vocal acrobatics are thrilling. Enjoy!

Many thanks to Michael Pisano for his assistance in editing this documentation, and to the Kurt und Ernst Schwitters Stiftung, Sprengel Museum Hannover, for their kind permissions to allow reproduction of our performance of Schwitters’ poem. My software was created in OpenFrameworks and incorporates Wil Howitt’s sophisticated syllable-detection algorithm.

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