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“Moving parts: On structure and chaotic actions in my music composition process"

Edmund Campion is a composer and Director of the UC Berkeley Center for New Music and Audio Technologies (CNMAT  In this talk, he will explore and demonstrate how a non-technical person from the pre-internet age has met the challenges and pitfalls of using and inventing digital tools to inspire and guide artistic outcomes. Through an archaeology of creative process covering twenty-five years of composing with emerging technologies, Campion will examine how digital tools help and hurt in the questioning, discovering, shaping, recombining and designing of new musical experiences. Inside the digital landscapes, the Western practices and aesthetics of written music, electro-acoustic music, improvised music, and research-based music, intermingle and hybridize.  Fast personal computers and improved inter-application and long-distance data sharing suggest new design strategies for making music and collaborating with other artists.

Edmund Campion (b. 1957) spent his formative years at Columbia University and IRCAM (Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique) in Paris.  Between 1989 and 1994, he was a student of Gèrard Grisey.  At IRCAM, he composed Losing Touch for vibraphone and electronics (1995).  He was eventually commissioned by IRCAM for the full-scale ballet Playback, as well as Nat-Sel for piano and computer, and Corial for improvising saxophone and interactive computer system.  In 2012, as the Composer in Residence with the Santa Rosa Symphony, he composed The Last Internal Combustion Engine, a Concerto Grosso with Kronos Quartet and electronics.  Joshua Kosman of the San Francisco Chronicle called the piece “a vivid and richly imagined concerto.”
Mr. Campion has worked with Les Percussion des Strasbourg ensemble who commissioned and released Wavelike and Diverse in 20111 on their 50th anniversary CD collection. Other premieres include Auditory Fiction (2011), commissioned by Societe Generale for Radio France, Small Wonder (The Butterfly Effect) (2012), commissioned by the Serge Koussevitzky Foundation for the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, and Auditory Fiction II, written for the ECO Ensemble for the 2014 Venice Music Biennale.  In 2012, Campion was awarded the Goddard Lieberson Fellowship given by the American Academy of Arts and Letters to a “composer of exceptional gift”. Other prizes from a long list of accolades include the American Rome Prize and the Lili Boulanger Prize. Edmund Campion is currently Professor of Music Composition at UC Berkeley and Director at the Center for New Music and Audio Technologies.  In 2014, the American Composers Orchestra released a CD of his work Practice, for orchestra and electronics.  A monograph CD of the works of Edmund Campion by the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, with David Milnes, is available on Albany records.  
Current projects include, Cluster X, a co-commissioned piece written for the Ensemble Intercontemporain in collaboration with audiovisual artist Kurt Hentschläger, and a commission by pianist Marilyn Nonken to compose a piece inspired by Gerard Grisey’s Vortex Temporum.