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Criton, Pascale : Infra (Potlatch)

Four fascinating compositions by Pascale Criton exploring microtonalities on instruments tuned in 1/16th tone (violin, viola, guitar) based on gestural processes developed in close collaboration with the musicians: one duo with Silvia Tarozzi and Deborah Walker, one solo piece with Deborah Walker, and two pieces performed by Dedalus Ensemble.

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product information:

UPC: 3491570003329

Label: Potlatch
Catalog ID: P317
Squidco Product Code: 24957

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2017
Country: France
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded on 2014 (Radio France, Paris) and 2017 (GMEA - Albi)


Pascale Criton

Silvia Tarozzi

Deborah Walker

Dedalus Ensemble

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Artist Biographies:

"Pascale Criton was born in Paris in 1954. She studied composition with Ivan Wyschnegradsky, Gérard Grisey and Jean-Etienne Marie. She participated in the Darmstädter Ferienkurse in 1980/88, took electro-acoustic training at CIRM (International Centre for Musical Research, Nice) from 1980 to 1982, as well as a musical computing course for composers at IRCAM (Paris) in 1986. Moreover, she is interested in ethnomusicology and took part in activities of the Research Group on Oral Tradition in Abidjan (Ivory Coast) in 1979.

She has directed various creative workshops at the University of Paris (1979-81), the Avignon Festival (1977-78) and the Pantin Conservatory (1981-82). In a different capacity, Pascale Criton was a member of the Musical Theatre Company of Les Ulis, with Michel Puig, Michaël Lonsdale, Catherine Dasté and Edith Scob, from 1975 to 1980, and would pursue her stage experience in the framework of productions with Transcenic: dance, theatre, music and audiovisual, with, in particular, Ecrans noirs, first performed in 1982.

In the field of musical research, since 1980, Pascale Criton has explored micro-intervals and their organisation, whether it be quarter-, eighth-, twelfth- or sixteenth-tones. Her writing uses scordatura (specific tuning of stringed instruments, guitars and piano), combined with orchestral instruments and digital synthesis.

Fascinated by work on the sound continuum, Pascale met Gilles Deleuze, 1978-87, and took a university degree course in musicological research: Chromatismes, a masters with Daniel Charles, University of Paris VIII (1987), Aspects théoriques et réalisations de la notion du continuum dans la musique du XXe siècle, a post-graduate degree under the direction of Hugues Dufourt, doctoral training in Music and Musicology of the 20th Century, IRCAM (1993), Total chromatique et continuums sonores, une problématique de la pensée musicale du XXe siècle, doctorate.

Her research has resulted in State commissions and lectures on musical aesthetics ('Introduction to La loi de la Pansonorité by Ivan Wyschnegradsky', Geneva, 1996), as well as synthesis and new instruments. A consulting composer at IRCAM (Department of Musical Research, 1989-91), she has collaborated with the Waves and Acoustics Laboratory at the School of Physics and Industrial Chemistry in Paris since 1993.

In 1999, the Ensemble 2e2m devoted a portrait concert to her, as well as a publication devoted to her work, which was brought out in the 'à la ligne' collection (Ensemble 2e2m): Pascale Criton, les univers microtempérés.

Her works are published by Jobert and have been played in France as well as abroad: Georges Pompidou Centre, IRCAM, MANCA Festival (Nice), Midem (Cannes), Intermusica, Ars Electronica, Darmstadt, Ijsbreker Institute (Amsterdam), Archipel Festival, 3rd Pianoforum (Heilbronn), the American Festival of Microtonal Music in New York and Radio-France."-Paul Méfano.

-Pascale Criton Website (

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"Silvia Tarozzi (1975) is a violinist, performer and improviser.

She obtained her diplomas at the Bologna and Rovigo conservatories (Italy), specialising under Master Enzo Porta (with whom she went on to establish a violin duo for a short and lucky period). Subsequently, she moved to Paris, where she studied with Jeanne Marie Conquer (Ensemble Intercontemporain) and Patrick Bismuth (baroque violin).

Her research on sound and instrumental gestures, fuelled by her own experience as an improviser, finds expression through several collaborations with composers.

She writes music for her own musical projects.

A few recent collaborations:

"Scrap" for violin and interactive electronics, by the Korean composer Hyun-Wa Cho, performed at the IRCAM institute in Paris;Original music for the contemporary dance production "DONC", for one violinist and four dancers, for Sylvain Groud's dance company;Original music for the poetry reading/concert "21 a Primavera", with poems written by Alda Merini and read by the actress Margherita Zanardi;

She plays violin with the Ensemble Dedalus, which boasts collaborations with many American and European composers (Christian Wolff, Alvin Lucier, Phill Niblock, Jürg Frey, Michael Pisaro, Jean-Luc Guilonnet, etc.). With the Ensemble Dedalus she also recorded the "Rational Melodies" by American composer Tom Johnson for New World Records.

She plays in a duo with Massimo Simonini (prepared theremin) (Hagen Festival, Santarcangelo dei Teatri, Mantica) and collaborated with him in writing and performing the music for the show "L'uccello di fuoco" by Chiara Guidi (Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio).

In 2010 she wrote the music for the video "Supermamie" by Thomas Mailaender, commissioned by the festivals Act'Oral (Marsiglia) and Sonorités (Montpellier).

Since 2011 she collaborates with composer Éliane Radigue. In 2012 she performed the world premiere of "Occam II" for solo violin and "Occam Delta I" for quartet (AngelicA Festival, Bologna), and "Occam River II" for violin and cello and "Occam Delta III" for violin, viola and cello in 2013 (Fragment Festival, Metz).

In 2010 she started a collaboration with composer Pascale Criton on the composition "Circle Process", which will be performed at the Musique Action Festival in Nancy and at Biennale Venezia Musica 2012.

Since 2012, she coordinates the activities of the "Piccolo Coro Angelico" choir: a vocal research and experimentation project for children, held at the Centre for Music Research - Teatro San Leonardo (Bologna, IT)."

-Silvia Tarozzi Website (

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"Deborah Walker is a new music performer and improviser based in Paris. She was born in Reggio Emilia, Italy, in 1981 and studied cello in her hometown. After graduating she moved to Paris to continue her cello studies with Agnès Vesterman and Anssi Karttunen. Since 2007 she is a member of Dedalus, a variable ensemble which plays experimental and contemporary music, who has collaborations, among others, with Tom Johnson, Pascale Criton, Christian Wolff, Antoine Beuger and Jurg Frey.

Deborah Walker has collaborated with artists like Joëlle Leandre, Markus Stockhausen, Garrett List and Teri Weikel. She's currently working with composers Pascale Criton and Eliane Radigue in pieces for solo cello or small ensembles. She has played in many festivals such as I Suoni delle Dolomiti, Italia Wave, ZKN in Karlsruhe, Festival d'Avignon, Festival Nomad in M'Hamid (Morocco), Ze Couch (New York) and tours regularly around Europe. She also takes part in theater, dance and circus performances, both as composer and performer. Deborah is doing a Master in Sound and Music Composition at the University of Paris 8 (St. Denis). Her recordings include works by Tom Johnson played by the Dedalus Ensemble (New World), a live recording of the intuitive music quintet Flowers of Now(21st Records) as well as Frammenti di Scrittura Prematura (Imprint Records) and Imagine Book (ILDE)."

-euromicrofest (

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"Founded in 1996 by Didier Aschour, Dedalus is a set of contemporary music established in Montpellier since 2011. Dedalus is together associated with the GMEA, National Center of Music Creation Albi-Tarn.

His repertoire is based on free instrumental scores from contemporary North American and European experimental music from the 1960s to the present.

The ensemble performs in Europe and the United States, including the Instants Chavirés, Roulette (NYC), and in festivals such as Music We'd Like to Hear (London), Musique Action (Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy) Angelica (Bologna), Elektricity (Reims) ...

His concerts and recordings have been hailed by critics around the world (New York Times, The Wire, Movement, Revue & Corrigée ...)"

-Dedalus Ensemble Website (

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track listing:

1. Shift 2:16

2. Coalescent 2:15

3. Impulse 2:04

4. Sways 2:09

5. Process 9:10

6. Steppings 5:20

7. Chaoscaccia 17:15
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Infra includes four compositions by Pascale Criton: one duo with Silvia Tarozzi and Deborah Walker, one solo piece with Deborah Walker, and two pieces performed by Dedalus Ensemble (Didier Aschour guitar, Amélie Berson flute, Thierry Madiot trombone, Silvia Tarozzi violin, Deborah Walker cello).

"The pieces gathered in this CD all call on instruments tuned in 1 / 16th of tone: violin, violin - that, guitar. My interest in microintervals goes hand in hand with my attraction for small differences: the minimal intervals reveal the qualities of the sound, the complex components of the timbre and the noise. They allow one to introduce minute variations of time and movement. These slight differences stimulate awareness of sensations, variations in velocities, degrees of fluidity and energy involved in dynamic transformations.

All the pieces are based on gestural processes developed in close collaboration with the musicians. A script of variables in transformation allows the gesture to be built smoothly, except metric and fixed heights, under the "identity" of the note. The microtonal tuning renews the expressive sensitivity of the instruments and requires attentive listening to control tiny sound variables while experiencing the limits of perception.

Bothsways (2014) for violin and cello explores expressive traits and extended microtonal techniques. The general idea is related to the instability, the fluid and reciprocal passage between different states or ways of playing. Both (two, together) and Sways is composed of four movements (solos and duets) of two minutes, approximately: Shift (vlc); Coalescent (vl and vlc); Impulse (vl); Sways (vl and vlc).Process (2013) for flute, trombone, guitar, violin and cello, installs a balance of first floating variables (descending motion) which then stabilize in a beat pattern. Steppings (2013) for flute, trombone, guitar, violin and cello stands on a constant battuto gesture. The microtonal tuning of the strings associated with the multiphonics of the wind instruments makes very fine sound variations possible at the border of the timbre, the sound and the noise.

Chaoscaccia (2014), written in collaboration with Deborah Walker, develops a style specific to the chord in sixteenths of tone with the cello. A journey of the instrumental gesture, unstable and continual, the script (diagram) is built around the idea of ​​change - shift. It is a question of grasping the musical gesture in its dimension of event, of seeking its motor and processual idea. Attention is directed more to the velocities, to a constant, unstable energy. Various states coexist, their tension is maintained, always in rupture, the gesture itself is guide, the action is "listening"."-Pascale Criton (translated by Google)

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Compositional Forms
Stringed Instruments
Solo Artist Recordings
Duo Recordings
Quartet Recordings
New in Compositional Music

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