Alvin Lucier

Alvin Lucier: I Am Sitting in a Room

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This electroacoustic composition, like Lucier's "Composition on a Long Thin Wire", has become a classic of new music since its creation in 1969. The performance procedure is fairly simple: a speaker reads a text that explains the procedure which involves recording the speech and then playing it back many times in the same room. It is re-recorded each time (on the second machine). The resonances (eigentones) of the room gradually cover most characteristics of the voice (except for rhythm). "I regard this activity not so much as a demonstration of a physical fact, but, more as a way to smooth out any irregularities my speech may have." (The composer does have a slight stutter, which was also used as a positive musical element in composer Robert Ashley's piece "Fancy Free, or It's There"). In this realization, the speech is repeated 32 times. The effect is hypnotic, ethereal, and extremely intimate in the way the performer, in this case, the composer, interacts with his environment.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 45:21
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