Willful Devices has adapted their new show, HDPHN, for the new reality of live concert experiences — as a telematic performance. This show features new music in addition to adapted work from the original concert.
Telematic HDPHN will be streamed live from Studio Z on Facebook Live. Donations will be accepted to support Studio Z amid COVID-19 setbacks.
HDPHN premiered in February and seems to be designed for an audience distributed around the world and (ideally) listening on headphones. Scott Miller (Kyma) and Pat O’Keefe (Clarinet) have been experimenting with deploying their interactive programming across the internet from St. Paul to Otsego, MN. HDPHN presents the audience with a new way to experience live electro-acoustic music performance, similar to the “silent disco.” HDPHN imagines a shared audience experience dependent on the use of a technology, headphones, which is usually regarded as isolating. The music is performed live, but instead of being amplified through a set of speakers in the room, all sounds (both acoustic and electric) are delivered to the audience via headphones. Processed sound is also returned to the clarinet via analog ‘talk box,’ which is piped through the clarinet to be filtered by the instrument and amplified by the microphones, creating a feedback loop that is further manipulated by Pat on the clarinet. The use of headphones allows for a live concert of music that involves sounds that are often impossible to hear without amplification, and also for an extremely precise presentation of sound moving in space.
HDPHN was created and is performed by Willful Devices: Pat O'Keefe (bass clarinet, Bb clarinet) and Scott L. Miller (Kyma, Keyboard). It was developed while in residence at Sparta Sound, a ‘Rock ‘n Roll Bed and Breakfast’ up on the Iron Range of Minnesota, owned and run by musician and studio engineer, Rich Mattson. The residency was funded by the McKnight Foundation, in support of Miller’s 2018 McKnight Composer Fellowship.
Willful Devices is an electroacoustic avant-improv duo, born of the collaboration between composer/computer musician Scott Miller and clarinetist/bass clarinetist Pat O’Keefe. Their name refers to the willful nature of the tools they manipulate to produce sound, because despite their best efforts, these devices are never fully under their control. Willful Devices celebrates this, since within this unpredictability lies the potential for unimagined sonic discovery. Willful Devices develops most of their music during that unique time we all know as play, and the results are a vital, dynamic product of the connection between Scott and Pat and their unique musical identities.