PROJECT | LOSING TOUCH
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Losing Touch (duration 11') for vibraphone and fixed electronics was composed in 1994.  The piece is published by Billaudot Editions (Catalog #GB7027) in Paris (Theodor Presser, US representative).  A complete published edition with rehearsal CD and mono performance tape is available for student performance from several on-line dealers.  Professional presentations of Losing Touch require rental of materials directly from the publisher.

Composed at the IRCAM computer music center in Paris in the summer of 1994, Losing Touch uses a fixed electronic part made of vibraphone samples and vibraphone-like sounds working in synchrony with a live vibraphone virtuoso.  The live musician receives an in-ear conductor signal that insures split-second synchronization between the electronic and the acoustic world. 

A living musician inhabits and interacts with the real world, engaging the physical instrument with a subtle human touch.  The live musician has a physical and mental limit.  In contrast, the electronic world can endlessly execute any conceivable passage.  Artificial by nature, the electro-acoustic environment substitutes its lack of expressive ability with unlimited activity and color. 

The human performer in Losing Touch begins the relationship with the electronic world in a naïve spirit, a spirit of mutual cooperation.  As the piece nears its end, the electronics push beyond the limits of human performance.  Ultimately, the live soloist, being robbed of the more expressive aspects of performance,  "loses touch.” By the end, the machine and human occupy different worlds, and the illusion of cooperation is shattered.    The composition is dedicated to composer John Harbison.

In 1999, Danielle Jaeggi and Les Films d’Ici produced the film Losing Touch, a documentary of Edmund Campion and the making of the piece Losing Touch.

Losing Touch performance details

The fixed electronic part (to use a terminology better adapted to  digital media) is available in three forms.  For professional concerts the electronic support is either an A-DAT 8-channel digital tape or three individual sound files.  In both cases, only three channels of audio are used,  two channels for stereo diffusion and one channel for the clicktrack.  For student recitals and rehearsal the electronic support is CD.  Because digital media is evolving,  it is important to verify with the editor the current available methods for diffusing the electronic part of Losing Touch.

The 8-channel digital A-DAT or the sound files are to be used for PUBLIC CONCERTS  of LOSING TOUCH.  The multi-channel support is available for rental from Editions Gérard Billaudot (14 rue de l’Echiquier - 75010 Paris -  FRANCE).  In the United States, or  from Theodor Presser Company (588 North Gulph Road, King of Prussia, PA 19406).

The Compact Disk that is included in the purchase of the score of LOSING TOUCH is intended for rehearsals, student recitals and master classes only.  Public Concerts of Losing Touch using the mono-mix CD are EXCLUSIVELY FORBIDDEN.

All forms of digital media include a syncronizing « click-track » that permits coordination between the fixed electronic sounds and the soloist.  The performer wears a headphone in order to hear the click-track.  Special care should be taken to insure that the click-track is never heard by the audience nor amplified along with the live vibraphone.

Selected Performance History of Losing Touch

Losing Touch, San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, San Francisco, April 30, 2007
Losing Touch, Mosaic Ensemble, Buffalo, New York, June 2, 2004
Losing Touch, Claire Edwardes, Amsterdam Conservatory, June 5, 2003
Losing Touch, Ictus Ensemble, Touliuse, France, September 9, 2001
                              Frederic Daumas, Marseille, France, March 28, 2002
Losing Touch, Steve Schick, Academy of Music, Kracow, Poland, July, 2001
                              Steve Schick, Chartreuse de Villeneuve-lez-Avignon, France, July, 2001
                              Steve Schick, Sibelius Academy, Helsinki, Finland, July, 2001
                              Miguel Bernat, Sound Lines Festival, Portugal, August, 2000
                              Daniel Druckman, Festival of New American Music, September, 2000
                              Miguel Bernat, Sevilla, Spain, October, 2000
                              Russell Greenberg, UC Berkeley, October, 2000
                              Christopher Deane, University of North Texas, November, 2000
                              Miguel Bernat, Festival of Music of the 20th Century, Portugal, Nov. 2000
                              Christopher Deane, University of Texas, Austin, November, 2000
                              Daniel Ciampolini, Klangspuren festival, Austria, September
                              Daniel Druckman, Merkin Concert Hall NYC, February, 2001
                              Ensemble TM+, Maison de la Musique, Nanterre, France, March, 2001
                              Daniel Ciampolini, Centre Pompidou, France, June, 2001
                              Daniel Ciampolini, Clermont Ferrand, France, June, 2001

1999-2000                Losing Touch, Paulo Oliveira, Porto, Portugal, September
                              Grupo de percussao, Porto, Portugal, March
                              Kuniko Kato, Tokyo, Japan, March
                              Florent Jodelet, Geneva, Switzerland, March
                              Benoit Gaudelette, Metz, France, March
                              Daniel Druckman, Westport Arts Center, Connecticut, May
                              Daniel Druckman, LA County Museum, Los Angeles, May

1998-99                   Losing Touch, ICTUS Ensemble, Porto, Portugal, July
                              Migual Bernat, Valencia, Spain, July
                              Daniel Ciampolini, Klangspuren festival, Austria, September
                              Eli Shapiro, ICMC 98, Michigan
                              Miguel Bernet, Paris, October
                              Eli Shapiro, University of Michigan, November
                              Florent Jodelet, Radio France, Paris, January
                              The Fromm Players at Harvard, Harvard University, March
                              Laurent Vieuble, Festival Musiques en Scene, Lyon, France, March
                              University of California, Santa Cruz, April
                              University of the Pacific, Stockton California, April
                              Kuniko Kato, Oxford Contemporary Music Festival, England, March
                              Jean Geoffroy, Agora Festival, IRCAM, June
                              Daniel Ciampolini, IRCAM, June

1996-97                   Losing Touch, Meltdown Festival, Royal Festival Hall, London, July
                              The New York New Music Ensemble (NYNME)
                              University of Pennsylvania, September
                              University of Maryland, October
                              The New Millennium Ensemble, UC Berkeley, November
                              Dinosaur Annex
                              University of New Hampshire, February
                              First Church, Boston, February

1995                       Losing Touch, Vincent Limouzin, IRCAM, Paris, January
                              Daniel Druckman, Miller Theatre, NYC, April
                              Vincent Limouzin, IRCAM, Paris, June