Double Monody (2013)

for amplified prepared guitar and clavichord

Duration: variable, ca. 8’

Premiere: Parlor Tapes+, Chicago, August 2013

Commissioned by DCASE (Chicago)

Double Monody explores an apparent contradiction in terms. The two performers work in unison, as a kind of meta-instrument, in order to sound one melody (the monody of the title). All the material is written as a continuous loop – the performers choose where to begin and end within this circular melody for each performance. Their unique sound qualities are constantly merged to yield new sequences of timbres that go beyond those that either instrument can play alone. The harmony in the work is the result of folding the two slightly different versions of the same melody together, but in the unique tuning system of each instrument: each part is the other’s rough double.