Show 902: Crown Quartet – A Natural Contract live at NaturArchy Resonance IV (Usmaradio)

Usmaradio presents
Crown Quartet
A Natural Contract
Sound Art in Four Countries
Resonances IV – NaturArchy: Towards a Natural Contract

LIVESTREAM : 23 June 2022, 17:00 – 18:00 CEST
➥ and a radio network across Europe:
➥ Radio Raheem (Milano)
➥ Neu Radio (Bologna)
➥ Orange 94.0 (Vienna)
➥ Fango Radio (Firenze)
➥ Kanal 103 (Skopje)

Crown Quartet
Croatia: Zahra Mani – double bass, bass & electric guitars, field recordings, live electronics
Italy: Roberto Paci Dalò – clarinet, bass clarinet, voice, live electronics
Hungary: Tibor Szemző – voice, bass flute, flute
Austria: Mia Zabelka – electric violin, vocals, live electronics

Station Manager and sound engineer: Alessandro Renzi
Technical direction at JRC: Denis Novello and Andreas Aschberger

We are pleased to announce the new sound art project A Natural Contract by the Crown Quartet. The project is supported by the festival Resonances IV – NaturArchy: Towards a Natural Contract.

To know the world is to breathe, to breathe is to savour the world. An interspecies dialogue where you find yourself human, vegetable, animal and mineral, in the name of fusion. A world composed not of objects but of streams that penetrate us and that we penetrate, of waves of varying intensity and in perpetual movement. We can no longer perceive the world as a simple collection of objects or as a universal space containing all things, but as the site of a veritable metaphysical mixture. Towards a “multispecies storytelling” (Donna Haraway).

A Natural Contract is created for Resonances IV and it crosses borders through the simultaneity of music and language in a musical exchange between four different European countries. The four countries in the Alps-Adriatic-Region have been barely accessible due to the Corona pandemic. The idea of this live sound art concert at a distance is to invoke notions of memory, a discourse, a call to the most basic elements of humanity and society.

A Natural Contract is a new project for the Crown Quartet, conceived and directed by Usmaradio. In addition to the rich instrumentation of the quartet, A Natural Contract has a textual layer embedded in the compositional structure (which leaves room for spontaneous improvised exchange). As with field recordings in music, the linguistic elements are subjected to selection, processing, reproduction and abstraction of text fragments that acquire new significances in connection with the sounds and the music.The multilingualism of the text fragments reflects the diversity of the musical languages and approaches of the four musicians. Hungarian, Italian, various German accents, English and Croatian meet the abstract vocal sound art of Zabelka and Szemző.
Thus vocal modes of expression are explored and contrasted in their diversity. There is a musical transformation of semantics, reflecting the absurdity that arises when you repeat a word for a long time, highlighting the transitions between language and sound, from noise to music. These processes in turn reflect the shifting meanings of terms such as borders and freedom in theCorona-shaped cultural-political landscape.

All four ensemble members have been working in the field of radio art for many years and have participated in diverse live stream project formats. So far, due to the technical challenges and complexity, these projects have always been implemented in cooperation with public institutions.

The radio as an artistic stage or platform is a unique performance and communication space. It is always a special moment to play live on the radio and to come into intimate contact with listeners in their own four walls. In times of physical distancing, the radio in connection with the internet offers a new enhanced platform for communicative exchange.

A Natural Contract is about overcoming borders through music and language.
A Natural Contract overcomes boundaries that have closed at an astonishing speed due to Covid-19. The long-term social, economic, socio-political implications of the events of the last few months are not yet foreseeable – just as little as we know how the virus and its mutations will affect our futures. In this respect, A Natural Contract is also a memory, a discourse, a reflexion of the most fundamental elements of humanity and society.

The four artists have been connected via internet stream from their studios in Austria, Hungary, Italy and Croatia in an acoustic exchange consisting of music, language and sound. The piece revolves around questioning acoustic materials, their manipulation, meaning, application and aesthetics.

within Resonances IV – “NaturArchy: Towards a Natural Contract “
A Natural Contract is produced by Resonances IV in collaboration with Usmaradio and Giardini Pensili.

Official Website of Resonance IV Summer School

In 2020 Usmaradio created the series Crown – fighting the lockdown through radio. An international tea time live concerts radio series. 33 daily collaborative telematic performances with the remote participation of artists from all over the world.
Later on, this experience contributed to the creation of the Crown Quartet project.

Crown Quartet
Zahra Mani (UK, PK, resident in Austria) is a musician, composer and curator. She performs live in various constellations and creates multi-channel installations and radio art. Her work combines field recordings, instruments and voices in an ongoing exploration of sound and music, investigating and revealing the spaces between.
Roberto Paci Dalò is an Italian clarinetist, composer, visual and sound artist. He performs worldwide in the usual and most unusual places.
Tibor Szemző Composer, performer, media artist, lives in Hungary. Oriented by his diverse lines of interest towards the borderline areas of the various genres. His works are present across Europe and beyond.
➥ Austrian violinist, vocalist, improviser and composer Mia Zabelka is at the forefront of international electro-acoustic performance art. She developed a unique musical language she calls “automatic playing”, where the music grows out of her body and gestures and finds its expression in her acoustic/electric violin, electronic devices, alien objects and voice. The violin itself becomes a sound machine.


Pictures by Alessandro Renzi

Usmaradio – Centro di Ricerca Interdipartimentale per la Radiofonia (CRIR) / Interdepartmental Research Centre for Radio Studies, is a workplace of The School of Radio to develop an innovative radio pedagogy. Workshops, work sessions, meetings, presentations of live performance as sections of the project. Produced by UNIRSM | Università degli Studi della Repubblica di San Marino. / /


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