[ V I N C E N T C A E R S ]


Percussionist | Researcher | Programmer

percussion | electronics | contemporary compositions | improvisation | interdisciplinary | research

Living Scores Live explores new strategies for contemporary percussion performance and their impact on the experience of the audience. This artistic research started in 2016 at LUCA School of Arts, KU Leuven. It aims at critically evaluating the trajectory from learning a contemporary composition to performing it in an interdisciplinary context. On the one hand, the research seeks to reinforce experiencing the performance of contemporary percussion compositions by creating different multimedia interpretations. On the other hand, the research proposes new formats for contemporary percussion performance based on skills and knowledge learned by studying the repertoire. Therefor LS Live looks at performance practices in both classical-contemporary as well as the non-classical contemporary performance scene and experiments how - elements of - both worlds can be used in a new approach to contemporary percussion performance.
The theoretical background in Living Scores Learn connects to current research on music and multimedia, musicology, linguistics and cognitive sciences. Important topics are the theories on music and multimedia by Michel Chion (synchresis) and Nicolas Cook (three modes of multimedia), the conceptual model of music by Lawrence Zbikowski, theories about metaphor (Lakoff and Johnson) and conceptual integration networks (Fauconnier and Turner), intermediality models by Annabel Cohen (congruence-association model) and Lars Elleström.
At the beginning of this research project, I collaborated with Sigrid Tanghe on a multimedia interpretation of Loops II. The aim was to expand the tension between fast repetitive processes and slow continuous transformational processes in the music (see analysis on LS Learn). We have created a first multimedia interpretation of the work. However, I am currently not convinced of performing written compositions as a strategy to explore interdisciplinary collaborations. So the focus in the artistic trajectory of LS Live has shifted towards a more improvisation-approach in my collaborations. As a consequence, my performance practice has shifted from only percussion playing towards performing with percussion and live electronics, and even only using live electronics. This allows me to expand my use of the knowledge gathered by studying and playing contemporary repertoire. The lsl.lpsr software is an example of this.
Stacks Image 7
One of the realizations in this research is the lsl.lpsr improvisation software. lsl.lpsr is a modular performance tool based on different compositional processes as encountered in the contemporary percussion repertoire (e.g. the loops process in Hurel, phase-shifting in Reich, etc.). A generative system creates the possibility for improvising with these processes, while different modules manipulate MIDI, audio and data. The software uses a similar note-image based interface and sequencer-engine as the lsl.clicktrack tool, but is expanded with generative functions and different output modes, so it can be both a MIDI sequencer and an audio slicing tool (in combination with m4l-devices). The flexible system allows for different formats of performance: up to now, it has been used in combination with vibraphone or percussion in solo performances, as an electronic instrument in solo or ensemble performances or as an electronic instrument manipulating live acoustic sounds. This will be expanded into the visual domain in future performances.
Living Scores Live has dr. Piet Swerts as supervisor and dr. Tom De Cock as co-supervisor. Klaas Verpoest, dr. Benjamin Van Esser, Sigrid Tanghe and dr. Luc Nys are part of the advisory committee. Living Scores Live is implemented in the curriculum at LUCA school of arts as an inter-campus collaboration between campus Lemmens (music department) and campus Sint Lukas (visual arts and design department). The course ‘Intermedia’ connects students at the two departments and stimulates co-creation and interdisciplinary collaboration. The course is guided by Vincent Caers at campus Lemmens and Klaas Verpoest and Peter Jacquemyn at campus Sint Lukas. The first iteration ‘Loops’ focused on the ‘Loops’-repertoire by Philippe Hurel. The second iteration ‘Error 2’ didn’t impose specific repertoire and focused on co-creation. The results have been presented during concerts at Stuk in Leuven. A report of the research will be published on the Living Scores website.