Posthorn is a live performance piece that I developed for the mutantrumpet/interactive computer system in the 2000s. The work is titled after and based on the “Posthorn solo”, a section of the third movement of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 3, originally composed in 1898. The Posthorn solo in the symphony is a pastorale trumpet call meant to sound from afar, played from offstage. The melody from the Mahler piece is used as an outline, but is varied greatly through timbral variations and live sampling. The time scales of the original theme are extended in both directions using ratiometric overtone structures which are implemented in real time through digital software. The dialogue between the acoustic instrument and interactive system guides the work into unforeseen areas each time it is performed. The recording is a live performance with no editing, done in one take.
This structure resembles the process that is used in my new work MANITOGA; a mobile structure based on the relationships of overtones along with the theme of brass in nature. MANITOGA will explore the techniques developed in Posthorn with an ensemble of brass players, something I have been interested in pursuing for many years.