The vihik series of works was realised when I began to gather fragmented text materials in sketchbooks intended for integrating them into larger works. These materials are simply scattered jot notes frequently in unrelated languages, quite often just spontaneously or in pure jest. Eventually, I decided that the fragmentary brainstorm materials could be juxtaposed and integrated into a work of its own, as it could be interesting to see what contexts they offer. The many Finno-Ugric fragments of interest in vihik (a) were intended for the other piece but for one reason or another did not find their ways into the larger work. In addition to the phrases in my sketches, I had also written lines of texts which were complementary to the found objects. When offered an opportunity to work with Rolston Quartet in Canada, I realised that it would be an interesting challenge to compose with the phonetic theories in an instrumental context. This was a common question posed by many of my colleagues previously and I thus took this opportunity to explore this possibility.
The gathered and original text materials were first read aloud for their prosodic characteristics. I paid attention to the timbral, pitch and durational qualities of the utterances and ‘translated’ these interpretations into playing techniques of the string quartet. I decided to restrict myself to parameters related to quantity and pitch. Short speech segments from the texts will remain short, while long ones will remain long. Voiced consonants will be pitched and articulated, unvoiced will be more percussive. For example, [t] sounds are represented by short staccatos, diphthongs such as [æi] are accentuated by glissandi to show the metaphor of shift, and so on. Forms of the short movements are drawn from the temporal qualities of the text fragments.
Composer: Tze Yeung Ho
Tze Yeung Ho (b. 1992) is a Norwegian-Canadian composer. He represented Norway in the UNM (Ung Nordisk Musikk) festivals of 2015 and 2018 held in Helsinki and Bergen respectively. He is the first prize recipient of Land's End Ensemble's 17th annual composition competition. His other collaboration with Gabrielsen, "hvorfor pusen?" received the second prize of Shanghai New Music Week's 1st Chamber Opera Composition Competition. Some other highlighted activities include his participation as a resident artist in the PRAKSIS interdisciplinary arts program developed in Oslo, his participation as a guest composer at Sound 59 festival in Perm, Russia, a collaboration with Heidi Dahlsveen in the project 23.27 at the Fortellerfestival 2017 (Norwegian Storytelling Festival), development of Gjennom Garden, a theatre work for Sølvguttene boys' choir and percussionist Eirik Raude, with Norwegian dramaturge Marius Kolbenstvedt, and his upcoming production of the opera project minn(i)e. Tze Yeung has worked with an array of performers and artists in different facets, including the NyNorsk messingkvintett (NO), [instead] ensemble (RU), Elisabeth Hetherington (NL/CA), Avanti! Chamber Orchestra (FI), MolOt Ensemble (RU), Ukho Ensemble (UA), Orkest de ereprijs (NL), Rolston Quartet (CA), Heidi Dahlsveen (NO), Jürg Henneberger (CH), Honghong Zheng (NO/ZH), Decho Ensemble (US), Michael Bridge (CA) and so forth. His music has also been featured at the ISCM World Music Days Festival/Estonian Music Days 2019 in Tallinn. Tze Yeung holds a master's degree from the Norwegian Academy of Music and is currently completing his PhD degree in composition at the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre.