88, for amplified piano, 2003 (Belma Beslic performing at  SKC, Belgrade, 2009)




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Gal 88

Composition for (amplified) piano, 2003

In 88, each key of the piano is only hit once. The sustain pedal remains pressed down during the entire performance. Depending on dynamics and pitch, complex tonal combinations of varying duration and intensity emerge. In this composition, the order of tones is of no essential importance, and was determined in a strictly incidental selection process. To further the acoustic awareness of the audience, Gal often strives to uncouple the acoustic and visual layers of a musical performance (and sometimes recombines them later in a more composed manner).

Below are two suggestions for a 'choreographed' presentation of 88:

Performance option 1)
The concert space is dark. The only light source is a lamp on the piano’s music stand which dimmly lights the score. The piano is positioned with the pianist’s back facing towards the audience. In front of the piano stands a translucent screen, the performer can only be seen as a distorted shadow.

Performance option 2) The concert space is dark. The only light source is a bright spot light positioned on the floor behind the pianist’s chair, turning the performer into a black silhouette (direct light needs to blocked). The piano is positioned with the pianist facing the audience. The pianist tries to play without any visible gestures, only moving the forearms which cannot be seen by the audience. Thus a visual connection with the sounding tones can not be established.


Duration: 6-8’
Instrumentation: Piano (& sound projection)
Equipment (optional): light projection, audio system

Selected performances

Amann Studios, Vienna, 06/2012
SC, Zagreb, 04/2009
SKC, Belgrade, 04/2009
Music Instruments Museum Berlin, March 2008
Wiener Tage der zeitgenössischen Klaviermusik, Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst, Vienna, February 2008
Kunstverein Alte Schmiede, Vienna, Xenia Hu (piano), March 2003 (premiere)

Audio excerpt (1m13s):

Other works for piano...... Other instrumental compositions