Utopia II is the second part of a series based on Luciano Berio’s Sequences. It deviates from this series through the use of live-electronics. When combining live-electronics with instruments, the original signal cannot be muted completely. In this piece, this is partially overcome by temporarily closing the curtain. From this point on, an acoustic barrier is placed between the harpist and the audience. By doing so, the impact of the utilised effects can be increased. In Utopia II, percussive effects, harmonic tones, glissandi, clicks and clusters are predominant. They are, however, always transformed by the effects and/or complemented by the pre-recorded sonic material.
What is necessary to perform this work?
The harp is supposed to be picked up by means of two hypercardioid microphones in XY configuration and played back through stereo loudspeakers (ossia: via contact microphones or supported by these). It is of utmost importance that the microphones only record the sounds produced by the harp. If necessary, they may additionally be shielded. The input level always equals the output level. The electronic may partially realised beforehand by means of using recordings (cf. the score). On page 15, it is requested to close the curtain. It serves as an acoustic barrier between the harp and the audience. In this way the harp’s sound may be transformed more profoundly. As outlined in the score the harpist may be transmitted to the auditorium by means of (a) screen(s).