Published in journal "Culture and Art", 2014-3 in rubric "Music and music culture", pages 349-361.
Resume: Acoustic experiments during performance of musical compositions are one of the innovatory features of modern musical art. Such experiments are typical for creative work of may composers of the second half of the 20th century including John Cage, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Iannis Xenakis , George Crumb, John Adams, Rodion Shchedrin, Alfred Schnittke, Nikolai Korndorf, Vladimir Martynov, Sofia Gubaidulina and others. A significant number of similar compositions were also created by a brilliant representative of postmodernism and a German innovative composer Mauricio Kagel (1931-2008). Kagel’s legacy consists of a great number of compositions which creation involved acoustic experiments. There are a number of parameters that ensure the significance of such experiments and show their important role in the evolution of music writing in general. These parameters include using items that are not usually used in musical art as musical instruments, singular arrangement of instruments and items on stage and in the audience hall and displacement of acoustic items when a composition is performed in a form of a play. By using a comprehensive analysis, the author of the present article analyzes a number of Kagel’s works that are based on acoustic experiments. The results of the analysis allow to draw a number of conclusions about the practical importance of Kagel’s experiments. In the majority of Kagel’s compositions acoustic experiments are not a sign of the epatage that was so fashionable in the 20th century but an expression of the composer’s attitude to inventions and his desire for innovations of the old ‘classical’ forms of music writing. Kagel managed not to get lost in the abundance of experimental tendencies and not to cross the line between a musical composition (when the sound bears certain information) and epatage or conglomerate of different techniques and styles of music writing combined in one piece of music as many composers of the post-modernistic generation did. This is what made Kagel an original leader of postmodernism in music.
Keywords: Acoustics, Kagel, post-modernism, experiment, musical art, instrumental theatre, happening, synthesis of arts, musical space, musical sound.
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