Category: Stories

Quiet Spheres

My artwork consists of two parts: a musical instrument which remains on earth, and five spheres which travel into space. The electronic musical instrument vibrates below the reach of human hearing. But as soon as the miniature spheres are placed on the surface, the sound becomes audible, and you can hear the music. The five spheres are made of five different materials (steel, silver, pearl, howlite, lodolite). Each sphere has its own mass, color, reflectivity, and texture. Each also has

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Bombshell

Much to my astonishment, I have become briefly (and marginally) famous for my role (miniscule) in a film about Hollywood beauty Hedy Lamarr. Not only was she the sexiest woman on screen in the 1940s and 50s, but she also was an inventor, and worked with my favorite composer, George Antheil, on a patent for a “secret communications device”. Although nothing came of their brilliant invention, it turned out to be a stunning preview of frequency hopping, a technique which

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Henry Cowell, inventor, bad boy, and genius

Radio Show produced by Guy Livingston: In Search of Henry Cowell for Australian Broadcasting Corporation (Into the Music)two episodes about this maverick American composer and inventor who, despite many personal challenges (including 4 years in San Quentin prison) managed to create a fascinating and powerful body of work, ranging from magisterial American symphonies to quirky avant-garde piano works.

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That darned cat

Ketzel the Cat now she’s back in the news: Read the marvelous Children’s Book! “A kitten’s stroll down a keyboard leads to a celebrated one-minute composition in this charming portrait of a remarkable true friendship.” Moshe Cotel was a composer who lived in a noisy building on a noisy street in a noisy city. But Moshe didn’t mind. Everything he heard was music to his ears. One day, while out for a walk, he heard a small, sad sound that

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Take me out to the ballgame

The Baseball Story “It’s a piece about risk,” said Livingston. “You can’t drop the ball.” —Sports Illustrated This is the first line of Annie Gosfield’s composition for Guy Livingston, premiered at the New York Public Library at Lincoln Center in 1997. The score calls for 2 baseballs, and was written as part of a program conceived by Livingston called “Ten Thoughts on the Five Boroughs.” This brilliant composition exists in two versions: the original which lasts about 5 minutes, and

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