I Could Have Chosen the Other Title

for me and another Me from a parallel universe

+ electronics & video

 

The Theory of Multiverse states that there is an infinite number of other universes other than our own. These worlds coexist with ours simultaneously on a dimensional level and the realities in these universes differ from slightly to radically. It could be formulated like this: every action and decision we take in our life leads us on a certain path, which defines us as persons and shapes our reality. At the same time, we deviate from other paths, which could have taken us to other events. All these possibilities exist further in other dimensions.
 
I thought it was about time to make a piece together with another Me from such an universe. As sound material I have taken samples from my old acoustic pieces and processed them electronically. My other Me is very similar to me, but has more courage and, because he is a DJ and electronic music producer (something I also once wished for myself), he has more groove and sometimes uses samples from other artists as well. Also, our musical taste is alike, up to the point where, due to his life experiences and decisions, he just does things a little bit different than me.
 
Communicating with yourself from a parallel universe can be very dangerous – please don't try this at home!

 

 

The placement of this piece in the middle of the concert had the purpose of balancing the strong messages between the first two pieces and the one afterwards. I Could Have Chosen the Other Title is still a piece with deep connotations, but has a lighter tactic that can be felt right from the title and the text: both are first-person micro-narratives, which send a colloquial feeling to the public. Also, the text arouses curiosity among the spectators by stating that a paranormal activity will take place – a gate to a parallel universe. However, the joke from the last sentence of the text assures the audience that everything is under control.

 

To raise the intrigue of the public and establish a narrative introduction, the piece starts with me alone, playing some samples of my old acoustic pieces. After about a minute, on the other side of the stage, a live projection of myself (controlling the devices on the table) slowly appears and disappears until it eventually stabilizes. Up to this point there is nothing strange going on, but as soon as I start playing a recording of my voice from when I was 7 years old (which sounds like an incantation, because it is reversed), the projection begins to diffuse and percussive noises generate glitches in the live broadcast of myself. When the incantation is over, my projection detaches from my images and becomes another Me from a parallel universe. He is almost a perfect replica of me, the only visual differences between us are the bow tie and, as seen later, the watch. On the music side though, he is more aggressive, starting off with a solo of electronic percussion. Just as my introduction was only audible from the loudspeaker behind me, his sounds are played only through the loudspeaker on the opposite side of the stage. I try to keep up with him by manipulating his sounds in real-time and after his solo is over, it is my turn again to present some samples of my previously recorded pieces. The friendly match goes on between us and ultimately we both end up playing the piano (keyboard) – our first childhood relation to music – in a tempestuous finale.

 

The entire piece is a parable of the DJ culture, where songs are usually only tide up together by subtly overlaying beginnings and ends of pieces, without developing the audio material. The harsh electronic beats of the piece, together with the glitches and the sampling of existing pieces, are further symbols of the DJ field. Although the other Me portrays the icon of the DJ in a slight ironical style, by exaggerating the movements of his body, it is actually my character who I am trying to satirize by juxtaposition: that of an uptight avant-garde composer.

 

The theme of this piece is in direct connection with that of the concert itself, narrating about our everyday decisions and their impact on our lives. Also, the antithesis between mundane (a party with DJs) and extraordinary (a glimpse into a parallel universe) evokes the great gap between our daily choices and the infinite results they could have led to. This concept is particularly interesting to me, because composition is an act of decision-making and each moment opens the path to an unlimited number of musical choices – but after one is made, the others remain possibly forever forgotten.

 

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