Pulitzer Prize-winning composer David Lang joins Alarm Will Sound for his new work, if, the latest episode in the Video Chat Variations series. Lang based the piece on a quote from Senator Bernie Sanders:
Lang performs Sanders’s text himself, and the ensemble reinforces Lang’s recitation, each musician in dialogue with the composer. The result is a music-making process that is analogous to democracy. Like all the works in the Video Chat Variations series, if was composed to be performed in real time over the internet. Lang’s approach of using recitation as a pole star to which the musicians can orient themselves is a creative approach to the challenges of the medium.
Alan Pierson, Alarm Will Sound Artistic Director, says of if, “One of the most powerful and most democratic possibilities that the internet offers is the possibility that many voices can amplify the voice of a single individual. David’s if expresses that possibility, asking the members of AWS to use their instruments to amplify David’s voice, which in turn is amplifying Senator Sanders’s.”