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CD release of Vocal Instant Composition work – The Genetic Choir

The first CD of the Genetic Choir is out! Find out more here or read below:

What is the Genetic Choir?

Genetics (from the Greek genno γεννώ= give birth) is the science of genes, heredity, and the variation of organisms.

Evolution is composition. The genetic reproductive cycle with its simple rules has produced an ecosystem with a huge number of rather well-composed organisms. Given the slow pulse of the reproduction cycle this has taken a couple of million years, but evolution can go much faster if not genes are the transmitters of information, but our volatile and flexible voices.

Based on the principles of copying and intuitive choice, the idea of the Genetic Choir is to become, as singers, transmitters of sound information that you receive and pass on, and which in the process converges through mutation and natural selection towards a complete sound eco-system, i.e. composition in time.

The human voice is in the first place approached in its various, subtle aspects, rather than an instrument that has to serve any musical convention. However, not only micro-aspects of sound (like pitch, timbre, overtones…) but also macro-aspects of music (like riffs, melody, rhythm…) can be the ‘DNA’ on which the music is developing.

Our creation processes are related to chaos theory, complexity principles and the self-organizing patterns of nodes in a living network. Genetic Choir compositions create significance and beauty from seeming randomness, not unlike genes that multiply and mutate or oscillators that sync with each other after a certain tipping point.

As we are singers of flesh and blood, the human component plays a role as well: Intention, meaning, taste – our so-called ‘free will’ amidst group tendencies and the imposing logic of the music itself. In this way, the Genetic Choir work deals with traditional themes of the human condition: Being initiator as well as small cog in the machinations of reality – and how this applies to living in the complex, networked society of today.

You can read more on our website:

The ensemble sings fully improvised concerts, but also works in collaborations with fine artists, writers and other musicians/composers, exploring semi-open structures like graphic scores and using the architectural-acoustic properties of a building to create site-specific aural experiences.

Find on this CD the most interesting pieces we sang on sessions and concerts in the last three years.

If you’d like to order it, follow this link:

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Caden Manson is a director, media artist, and teacher. He is co-founder of the media ensemble and network, blog, and publisher, He has co-created, directed, video- and set designed 18 Big Art Group productions. Manson has shown video installations in Austria, Germany, NYC, and Portland; performed PAIN KILLER in Berlin, Singapore and Vietnam; Taught in Berlin, Rome, Paris, Montreal, NYC, and Bern; the ensemble has been co-produced by the Vienna Festival, Festival d’Automne a Paris, Hebbel Am Ufer, Rome’s La Vie de Festival, PS122, and Wexner Center for The Arts. Caden is a 2001 Foundation For Contemporary Art Fellow, is a 2002 Pew Fellow and a 2011 MacDowell Fellow. Writing has been published in PAJ, Theater Magazine, and Theater der Zeit. Caden is currently an associate professor and graduate directing option coordinator of The John Wells Directing Program at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama.

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