ULYSSES Audience Research Blog #4 – ManiFeste-2017 Festival, IRCAM, Paris (FR)
06/2017 Ircam – FR
A quick note on my most recent audience research visit a couple of weeks back to an organisation that requires little introduction. One of the most influential and prolific institutions for new music production and musical research in Europe, IRCAM holds the month-long ManiFeste every summer, a festival and academy for contemporary music that promotes exchange between music and other art forms, such as dance and theatre.
The audience survey was handed out at a ManiFeste concert on the 17th June, an event with a programme featuring two complementary works for vocals and electronics: Gérard Grisey’s Les Chants de l’Amour and a new work by Alberto Posadas, entitled Voces Nómadas. The audience seemed to be close-knit and comprised mainly of people with a relatively high level of musical training and familiarity with contemporary classical music, which fits with a concert that presented complex, challenging works by two composers closely associated with IRCAM. There were several very committed and interested attendees among the respondents: a number of audience members engaged thoroughly with the questionnaire and the terminology used in it, leaving behind detailed comments about contemporary music and its relationship to classical music, just the kind of reaction I’d hoped to encourage!
Highlights: Manifeste 2017 (16th-19th June)
- – Philippe Manoury presented two works at a lecture-concert at the Collége de France. Composed for Ensemble Intercontemporain violinist, Hae-Sun Kang, Partita II for solo violin and electronics realises much of Manoury’s continued thought and research on time and its role in electroacoustic music. A delicate interplay between the violinist and the electronic manipulation gradually developed throughout the piece, which created mesmerising layers of sound, often in contrasting tempi.
- – Manifeste was partnered this year with an exhibition at the Centre Pompidou by the name of L’Œil écoute (‘The eye listens’), which explores exchanges between visual artists and musicians from 1905-1965, with a partial focus on the city of Paris as a centre for such collaboration. Slipped inconspicuously into and around the Centre Pompidou’s permanent modern collection, the display took in everything from Stravinsky’s and Satie’s connections to ballet and visual art through to John Cage’s paintings and adventures in notation, in part tracing the rapid establishment and rejection of ‘-isms’, manifestos and artistic allegiances that marked this period (among them Futurism, Musicalism, Dadaism and Fluxus). A beautifully curated collection, rich in detail and insight.