Center for Computer Music Hosts International Electro-Acoustic Music Festival, March 24–26

Pauline Oliveros, doyenne of American experimental music, will perform at the Levenson Recital Hall, March 24. Photo by Peter Kiers

The ninth annual International Electro-Acoustic Music Festival at Brooklyn College celebrates internationally renowned experimental composer Pauline Oliveros’s seventieth birthday with three events focusing on live and improvised electronic music. Founded in 1995 by composer George Brunner, the International Electro-Acoustic Music Festival is an outgrowth of Brooklyn College's Center for Computer Music, and features the newest and most adventurous electronic music being created today.

  The Center, founded in 1972, is one of the oldest computer music programs in the United States, and has enjoyed a prestigious association with many of the most adventurous American composers of our time, including Charles Amirkhanian, John Cage, Elliott Carter, John Corigliano, George Crumb, Jacob Druckman, Morton Feldman, Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Roger Reynolds, Joan Tower, and Vladimir Ussachevsky.

    This year's festival kicks off with a visit by Pauline Oliveros, who will discusses her music "As It Is" on Monday, March 24, at 12:15 P.M. in Levenson Recital Hall. Oliveros, who grew up in Texas where she learned to play the accordian (still one of her favorite musical instruments), has devoted her life to creating music and helping others create music. Presently based in Kingston, N.Y., she is president of the Pauline Oliveros Foundation, Inc., a non-profit program for the arts that she founded in 1985 to support the creation of new work. She composes and performs for a variety of ensembles, and has recorded dozens of albums and CDs since the 1960s. In 1999 she wrote "Six for New Time (for Sonic Youth)," which appeared on Sonic Youth's Goodbye 20th Century CD, and her contribution to the rock group's recording brought her many new fans.

   Long a proponent of electro-acoustic music, Oliveros is the inventor of the musical technique known as Sonic Meditation and the attentive practice known as Deep Listening. During her talk in Levenson Hall, Oliveros will illuminate some of these concepts with the assistance of Brooklyn College faculty percussionist Brian Willson. A reception in honor of Oliveros’s 70th birthday will follow.

   On Tuesday, March 25 at 7:00 P.M. the performance artists from See Hear Now will transform the stage of the Whitman Theater into an immersing environment for their improvised visual music. Frequent collaborators with Pauline Oliveros, See Hear Now consists of the artist Gisela Gamper, who mixes and projects her original video imagery, and musician David Gamper, who performs his acoustic music with digital transformations.

    The International Electro-Acoustic Music Festival concludes with a concert on Wednesday, March 26 at 7 P.M. in Levenson Recital Hall that focuses on the younger generation of live electronic music improvisers. Chicago composer Jeff Kowalkowski will be featured in a performance with Brooklyn College faculty composer, and the director of the Center for Computer Music, Amnon Wolman.

    Admission is free to all events. For further information, contact the BCBC box office at (718) 951-4500, visit, call the Conservatory Concert Office at (718) 951-5792, or visit The Conservatory of Music at Brooklyn College.

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