a living score – a language used to tell a story, communicate a process, and provide instructions while remaining transient and undefined
went forever missing to an unknown admirer thief, to a fourth interpreter, to the sea of lost mail, to the piccolo player in the clouds, to albert ayler, to its original recipient matana roberts, to the bureau of sacrificial arts, to the ministry for desired art, or to the museum of lost art. somewhere it is resting in peace.
Here’s the story:
I sent 15 of the 16 scores back to the recipients I initially created them for, after their final appearance of Khal at Audio Foundation Gallery in Auckland, New Zealand, to locations around the globe. The recipient of the above score, Matana Roberts, was in the process of shifting homes and said to keep her score. After meeting this amazing underground dancer (literally underground) from Tehran, Iran at the opening of Khal at Nga Taonga Sound & Vision in Auckland (random and thrilling!), I knew this project wouldn’t end when I got back to the US. I asked the dancer, Maryam Baghe Irani, if she would interpret one of the Khal scores into a solo dance piece. She said yes. The exchange occurred in November 2015. The score (originally made for Matana), was finally on its way to Auckland on July 18, 2016. My movements are slow. She was to interpret it into a dance, send me a video recording of the performance, and I would then compose music to accompany it. While more ideas were being exchanged, on August 10th 2016, I had the misfortune of receiving the package I had sent Maryam ripped and re-taped in a plastic bag, with a lovely note from USPS letting me know that they care and another letter stating that they found this empty parcel in the mail and believe that the contents were separated during handling. It made it as far as LAX transit from Highland Park, Los Angeles. This score survived Iranian customs and postal service, the Persian Gulf, the Caspian Sea, the North Atlantic Ocean, Brooklyn to Los Angeles, the Pacific Ocean, the Coral Sea, the Tasman Sea, but then lost highway from Highland Park to LAX before even leaving the city.
Despite the score’s physical disappearance, Maryam will still be interpreting the visual score (from images I sent her) into a dance sequence and I will still compose the music.
one song two sides bold breathing will forever remain a living score.
Dear Postal Customer:
We sincerely regret the damage to your mail during handling by the Postal Service. We hope this incident did not inconvenience you. We realize that your mail is important to you and that you have every right to expect it to be delivered in good condition.
Although every effort is made to prevent damage to the mail, occasionally this will occur because of the great volume handled and the rapid processing methods which must be employed to assure the most expeditious distribution possible.
We hope you understand. We assure you that we are constantly striving to improve our processing methods in order that even a rare occurrence may be eliminated.
Please accept our apologies.