Composition Commission issued to Ashley Fure
International Contemporary Ensemble, Brooklyn/New York, USA
“The Force of Things” is a music theater piece by composer Ashley Fure and architect Adam Fure that explores the animate vitality of matter. Investigating ideas of entropy and the innate drama of natural phenomena, the piece, which is supported by the EvS Music Foundation, stages a series of musico-dramatic events centered not on humans, but on objects.
Drawing from traditions of object theater and puppetry, “The Force of Things” combines live and electroacoustic music, architectural design, and theater to present a narrative radically de-centered from the lives of humans. Staged inside a ring of live performed and projected sound, this one-hour piece positions itself at the experiential boundary between immersive installation and live performance.
Audience members sit beneath a canopy of hanging things that transform through kinetic, sonic, and lighting as the piece unfolds. Swaths of sculpted latex hang lifeless then stretch into palpitating, translucent skins. Drops of liquid drip onto the floor, at first like rain, without pattern or aim, and later in focused, intricate rhythms that sync into orchestrated textures. Humans are absent from this landscape, and narrative emerges through the gradual or sudden evolution of objects through different states, some natural and some anthropomorphic.
The International Contemporary Ensemble sees “The Force of Things” participating in an intellectual project making waves across the fields of morality/ethics, ecology, and socio-politics. With regard to event production, it aims to create a new type of touring experimental opera, designed to be practical while maximizing the experiential impact upon listeners.
February 4, 2016
Miller Theater at Columbia University, New York City, USA
International Summer Course for New Music, Darmstadt, Germany
World premiere of the full version, location to be announced.