Re-scheduled – 21C Cinq à Sept: Eve Egoyan

Due to a very sudden change in the province of Ontario’s Covid policy, Eve’s live stream concert has been postponed until next year’s 21C Festival. Mark the date! January 22, 2022!!!!!

https://www.rcmusic.com/events-and-performances/21c-cinq-a-sept-eve-egoyan

Eve performs the world premières of Seven Studies for Augmented Piano which she created for a newly imagined instrument that delves into the space between what a piano can do and what Eve has always wished a piano could do. The core of these works is the live acoustic sound of the physical piano she is playing, but through the delicate intervention of technology, she tests (teases) the edges of the piano’s natural sound, ultimately pushing it beyond the familiar, through the impossible, and into the extraordinary.  The livestream also includes the world premiere of a short video directed by Toronto filmmaker Su RynardÉtudes for Augmented Piano takes the audience inside Eve’s world as she creates new works for this augmented piano. The video playfully reveals how the elusive sounds in her compositions are produced, while affirming how the listener is essential to Eve’s creative process, even in a time when isolation prevails.

Livestream tickets available:
https://www.rcmusic.com/tickets/seats/178601

FULL PROGRAMME:

Artist’s statement:

During these past months, without the possibility for live performances or the need for performance-related travel, I have looked inwards and created this programme.

I am known primarily as an interpreter of new works, often working in close collaboration with the composers whose pieces I play. In order to create for myself, I have had to deconstruct the piano and the notation normally used to write for it. These shifts have been a way for me to break from the past, from the music I have heard and from the way that music (written by others) looks on the page and how it inhabits my body.

Tonight, I am performing on a Yamaha disklavier – an acoustic piano with a computer interface. Coupling this instrument with software that models the behaviour of a physical piano, I am able to shadow the acoustic piano with a virtual piano that allows me to augment and extend the sonic range of the piano in ways I have long dreamt of, but have never before been able to achieve.

I thank the Canada Council for the Arts for providing me with the extraordinary opportunity to explore this dream and to compose these pieces, and for supporting the development of the technology that has made them possible. 

Seven Studies for Augmented Piano

1. Expansion

This piece opens with fluid movements across the piano’s expansive range. On the page itself, I am using my new notation system to its fullest. Near the end of the piece, a singing legato line is revealed, mimicking first a single string instrument, then a drone, then an ensemble. The end brings together the acoustic and virtual pianos.

2. Études for Augmented Piano (film)

Études for Augmented Piano takes viewers inside Eve Egoyan’s world as she creates a new composition for augmented piano. Snapshot-like moments, journal entries and visual explorations playfully reveal the secrets of how the elusive sounds in her compositions are produced. Combined with fragments from an enigmatic solo performance, the film affirms the necessity of the listener and the audience to the artist’s creative process, even when physical isolation prevails. – Su Rynard

Director: Su Rynard  

Cinematography: John Price  

Sound Recording: Dennis Patterson

Editor: Caroline Christie

3. A Doubling

Novelist and poet Anne Michaels’ text is the backbone of this composition. We hear Anne’s voice and the voices of the collaborative multidisciplinary collective URGE (I was a member for one of URGE’s works). My personal connections to Anne and URGE deepen my response to their voices. We are gathered within the piano during this pandemic—a time when we cannot gather freely, especially to sing. I am very grateful to have been able to use their voices for creative exploration.

4. Overtones

In this piece, I revel in the piano’s rich harmonies and reveal the harmonic overtones that we cannot always hear but are always present.

5. Shimmer

I wanted to create a piece where trills trail from my fingers as if a wake on the surface of water. It is physically impossible to play as many quiet trills as I seem liquidly able to do in this piece. 

6. Tidal

I was born and raised near the ocean in Victoria, B.C. I love to be near, inside, and on top of the ocean. In this piece, I sought to recreate some of these sensations.

7. Moonlit

I have spent the past few summers in Killarney Park with my family. I am entranced by the stillness of lakes. I have a hard time sleeping when there, heightened by the magical, otherworldly stillness of clear moonlit nights.

8. Crescendo on a Note

Once a piano note is struck, there is nothing a pianist can do other than listen to the decay as the resonance quietens. On a piano, you can build on top of the note’s decay—which is compelling and exquisite—but you cannot get louder (“crescendo”). This piece transcends that limitation.

Eve Egoyan | www.eveegoyan.com

Eve Egoyan is an internationally celebrated artist whose medium is the piano. She continually re-invents her relationship with her instrument by creating, commissioning, and performing new works.

Trained as a classical pianist, Eve followed her curiosity into contemporary music when she arrived in Toronto thirty years ago, inspired by an emerging generation of Toronto-based composers. Her twelve solo CDs primarily feature works she has commissioned, and have received accolades including “Best Classical” (The Globe and Mail 1999) for her first CD, one of “Ten Top” classical discs (The New Yorker 2009), and “Top Classical Disc of the Year” (The Globe and Mail 2011). Eve was selected as one of 25 top Canadian pianists of all time by the CBC, and is the recipient of the 2019 Muriel Sherrin Award.

She is presently working on several projects including exploring her Armenian ancestry through music, working on visual / musical duets with animator Christopher Hinton, and creating piano fragments for a forthcoming installation by artist Heather Nicol.

Eve works to improve gender equity both as a performer and as a voice in the contemporary music community. 

Anne Michaels | www.annemichaels.ca

Anne Michaels is a novelist and poet. Her books have been translated into more than 50 languages and have won dozens of international awards, including the Orange Prize, the Guardian Fiction Prize, and the Lannan Award for Fiction. Her novel Fugitive Pieces was chosen as one of the BBC’s 100 Novels That Shaped The World and has been adapted as a feature film. Her most recent books include All We Saw and Infinite Gradation. The lines spoken in “A Doubling” are from Infinite Gradation, with permission from Anne Michaels and Exile Editions (www.ExileEditions.com).

Su Rynard | www.SuRynard.com 

Su Rynard is a Canadian filmmaker and media artist. Her films – short, long, fiction, experimental and documentary – have garnered international awards including the prestigious Alfred P Sloan Feature Film Prize and a Hot Docs Top Ten Audience Award. Recent work includes a feature documentary film on Eve Egoyan (Duet for Solo Piano), an interactive work (SoloForDuet.ca) and (The Messenger), a documentary which explores our deep-seated human connection to birds while chronicling their global demise. Rynard is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and was a Director Resident at the Canadian Film Centre. 

URGE

URGE is a collaborative multidisciplinary collective that created music-driven theatrical works from 1991 to 2006. The core of URGE is five artists – singer/teacher/writer Fides Krucker (www.fideskrucker.com), vocalist/yoga instructor Katherine Duncanson (kyogavoice.com), dancer/choreographer/director Marie-Josée Chartier (www.chartierdanse.com), director Joanna McIntyre, and composer Linda Catlin Smith (www.catlinsmith.com) – interested in exploring collaborative creation, particularly in the area of multidisciplinary performance, where music, spoken text, song and extended voice, movement and staging are equal partners in expression.

Each member of URGE brought with her a mature art form, sophisticated craft, and personal history, as well as what was most current in her life – tools for shared training during the development of each new work. Fresh and surprising impulses—from the repetition of a daily chore or the unusual use of everyday and sacred objects to the darker tones of life-chafing and -changing events, or the unfolding landscape of a night’s dream—became elements for improvisation in rehearsal. Importantly, URGE built improvised “play” into the fabric of each public performance, ensuring an ever-changing, evolving landscape of sound and image.

Thank you very much to:

The Canada Council for the Arts

Max Rubino, Heather Kelly and the 21C and Koerner Hall staff 

Yamaha Canada Music (Aya Sato) 

University of Toronto Faculty of Music (Eliot Britton, Gregory Newsome, Don McLean, Robin Elliott)

CMMAS (Centro Mexicano para la Música y las Artes Sonoras CMMAS) (Rodrigo Sigal)

Avatar and Patrice Coulombe 

PianoTeq (Niclas Fogwall)

David Rokeby

Joanna McIntyre

Vicky Husband

Steve Koerner

Dennis Patterson

Su Rynard

Caroline Christie

John Price

Brendan Schnurr

John Mark Sherlock

Phil Strong

Annie Moore

Linda Catlin Smith

Anne Michaels

Fides Krucker

Marie-José Chartier 

Katherine Duncanson

Rick Sacks and Arraymusic