Band connects via Internet

The Dans les arbres quartet is one of several acts to play in the Sonic Frontiers concert series. Photo Courtesy of Sonic Frontiers

Margaret Wilbourne

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Sonic Frontiers, a New College-sponsored concert series in its fourth season, is hosting its first remote concert Wednesday, simultaneously combining the talents of musicians at both the University of Colorado and The University of Alabama in real time over the Internet. The Dewar/Feeny/Hopson Trio, comprised of professors wielding saxophones, percussion instruments and electronics, will be playing alongside the French and Norwegian quartet, Dans les arbres, which encompasses the clarinet, harmonica, guitar, banjo and piano.

“It’s all instrumental, all sound and texture,” said Andrew Dewar, a music professor and Trio member. “It’s a hybrid of a disembodied YouTube video 
and a concert.”

The two acts will be collaborating in real time, thanks to a high speed internet connection. Despite a year of planning the mechanics of the concert, this technological transfer still brings about challenges not faced by musicians playing live.

“We’ve never rehearsed together, it’s all going to be improvised,” Dewar said. “We will have to cope with delays or breaks [in the stream] in real time.”

Brent McCollough, a junior majoring in music production and performance, said the concert’s goal of real-time, improvised collaboration is admirable.

“People use the internet to collaborate in real time like on Skype, but you face that delay, so the fact that they’re doing this in performance is really cool,” 
he said.

The originality of the performance remains a constant throughout the various aspects of its content and presentation, as the trio and it’s collaborators in Colorado expound on new musical techniques.

“Dans les arbres will play, then our trio, and then we plan to collaborate,” Dewar said. “There will be lots of what’s called extended techniques, playing 
instruments in new ways.”

McCollough said the breach outside of customary approach is important in keeping music refreshing.

“They’re using traditional instruments in a non-traditional way, like bowing a banjo [in the style of a cello],” he said. “This improvisation is definitely more interactive and more fun because it’s easy to get bored with the same ideas.”

Among the themes to be highlighted throughout the performance, connectivity remains at the forefront.

“I like this campus being in collaboration with another and connecting these two places for a moment,” Dewar said.

The concert will be held 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Moody Music Building.