High/Low Complexity

07/12/2016

In an earlier post I mentioned that I had been thinking hard about contrasting elements of activity.

My Bristol Hum performance was planned/structured around different techniques, but with little planning for what I would do when exploring each technique.

If planning a structure around activity, I can freely use any techniques, and develop an arrangement that plays with areas of high activity, and low activity.

I also developed this notion to include ideas of high and low complexity.

I think of this in terms of how complex is the arrangement for the listener – how easy is it for them to make sense of what they are hearing?

An area with high activity can be complex, but if this area is very repetitive, then eventually the listener makes sense of this and the complexity is reduced.

A single gesture could contribute to a sense of complexity if its direction is not obvious and predictable to the listener.

I have found good results from keeping these ideas in mind, making sure I am considerate to the complexity of what I am doing – ensuring enough complexity to keep the listeners interest, but whilst also trying to develop a structure that can be ‘understood’.

I have 2 performances coming up this month and I am looking forward to exploring these ideas further, along with some newly developed instruments, some refined versions of older instruments, and some better developed performance techniques.

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