Download Full Text (1.0 MB)
Year of Release
with new video art by Kristine Marx
About the Program
Aile falquée du songe, vous nous retrouverez ce soir sur d'autres rives! wrote Saint-John Perse in Oiseaux: Sickle wing of the dream, tonight you shall find us on other shores! Other shores. It was my intention to compose a work that would convey Due East - and the listener – through my own collection of unusual locales: a music of shifting terrains, each with its distinct sense of time and color and space. I wanted to undertake an exploration of the littoral regions of music, to skirt the particularities of style, to embrace the contradictions inevitably encountered along the byways of this conceptual itinerary;
The mysterious property of music that somehow suspends our perception of time as a relentlessly regular phenomenon naturally lends itself to metaphors of travel. We listen and forget ourselves, our surroundings; we begin to regard the sounds as so many objects viewed from the window of a moving train, from the prow of a ship. We see, but with the same elusive sight that furnishes memories. The margins of influence become unclear: how much of this experience is uniquely mine, how much do I hear only as I can hear it? And what elements reveal their identities to me, guiding my hearing? The dream, as Saint-John Perse has it, finds us. A bird – strange, beautiful, with certain knowledge - negotiates the expanse of nighttime sky over the sea. We see the bird, we see what the bird sees. We pass a hand over a map, covering hundreds of miles in hundredths of seconds.
To be elsewhere, to have one's head in the clouds: the limits of language underscore the complex intersection of the interior life with the physical world. The prospect of moving between two real or supra-real points; of constant, renewable, replenishing flux; the freedom to change course at any moment, - to escape! --; these are more alluring to me than any destination plotted on a timetable. The ancient paradox is an invitation: arrival is an impossibility lying half an inch away.
What thou must doe if a contrary wind take thee fiftie leagues off the shore.
From The Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques & Discoveries of the English Nation, (second edition, 1598- 1600) by Richard Hakluyt
WHEN thou art fifty leagues shot on thy way into the sea Southwest off, and there thou chance to meete with a contrary winde off the sea, and if it force thee to put roome, then thou shalt steere Northeast and by East, and shalt hall with sight of Cabos de! Plata, which shew when thou art a seaboord so farre as thou mayest descrie them, to be like two points of white sand: and if it be cleere thou shalt see within the land certain high hilles lying Northwest and by West called las Sierras de Zahara, and being three leagues from land thou shalt have thirtie fadomes water, and sand: And from thence to the bay of Cadiz thou shalt goe along Northwest by the coast: and if thou be in thirtie or forty fadomes, thou shalt have oaze; but if thou bee in Jesse then thirtie fadomes, thou shalt have other sounding; which if it chance, then thou art against S. Pedro. And if it bee by day thou shalt see the Ermitage of Sant Sebastian, which seemeth to be a shippe under sayle. And thou shalt goe into the bay taking heede of the Puercos, give them a good birth off. And if thou chance to bee benighted when thou fallest with the bay, and wouldest goe into the bay, thou shalt carie thy lead in thy hand, and be sounding: and finding thy selfe in rockie ground, thou shalt steere North because of shunning the Puercos: and yet give them not too great a birth because of The Diamant, and so thou mayest goe in, sounding when thou thinkest good. And being benighted and then not East and West with the bay, and if thou doest not goe into it, then make the largest boord thou canst keeping off till day.
If thou be at the Canaries and wouldest sayle to Nueva Espanna, thou shalt sayle foure and twenty houres South because of the calmes of Fierro. And from thence thou shalt goe Westsouthwest, untill thou finde thy selfe in twenty degrees. And then thou must goe West and by South, which is the course for the Isle Deseada. And from Deseada thou shalt goe West and by North, because of the variation of the compasse. And falling with Deseada, thou shalt finde it to rise low with the sea: and it standeth in 15 degrees. And the eastermost part is the sharpest, and smaller then the West point.
And if thou art going for Tierra firma, thou shalt goe West and by South untill thou come to Dominica, and there on the Northwest side is a river, where thou mayest water. The marks to know it bee a certaine high land full of hilles. And seeing it when thou art farre off to the seaward, it maketh in the middest a partition; so that a man would thinke it devided the Island in two parts. And this Island standeth in 14 degrees and a halfe.
I advise thee that if thou wouldest goe for Nueva Espanna, and so doest passe betweene Guadalupe and Monserate to the Westward, that being thus open off the entrance betwixt them thou shalt go Westnorthwest, and so shalt have sight of Santa Cruz, which standeth in seventeene degrees and a halfe. And the markes to know it be these. It is an Island not very high, and lyeth East and West, and at the East end it is lower then at the West end.
And going forward on thy course thou shalt runne Westnorthwest and so thou shalt goe to have sight of the Isle of San Juan de Puerto rico, which is an Island lying East and West, and standeth in eighteene degrees. And the markes be these. That on the West end it is lowest, and the Eastermost is the highest. And if thou fall with the middest of the Island, then thou shalt goe a long it to the West unto Cabo Roxo which is the end of the Isle. And from thence the coast runneth North to Punta Aguada. Cape Roxo hath certaine red cliffes. Thou must steere West and by South from Cape Roxo to find Mona , and so thou shalt have sight of Mona. And the marks thereof be these, it is a low land lying East and West: and on the East end it is highest, it hath a slope towards the sea, and standeth in 18 degrees, rather lesse then more. And if it be by day, then thou shalt runne West and shalt see Saona: which is an Island lying without Hispaniola, and lyeth East and West, and is full of trees; and hath certaine sandy bayes. And if it bee cleere weather thou shalt see within the land of Hispaniola certaine hie hils called las Sierras de Yguey. And b.eing benighted upon Mona, then thou shalt steere West and by South, because of certaine shoalds that lye off Saona: but having day light and no sight of land, thou shalt loofe up Northwest and so passe by it, and as thou goest along the coast of Hispaniola and seest the sea to be cast up into the aire, then thou shalt be about 10 leagues off the harbour of Santo Domingo, and these mountings up are called The Spoutes.
But I advise thee, that if thou bee benighted when thou fallest with Santo Domingo, then thou must keepe the hils called Sierras de las minas viejas to the Northwest. And if thou wouldest goe into Santo Domingo, and meetest there with a forcible Northerly wind, then the best way is to runne East till it be day. And having daylight thou shalt cast about and so thou must ply to wind-ward untill the Northerly wind be done; and when it is past, make all the saile thou canst to hale with the sight of Calle de las Damas: and when thou hast sight thereof thou shalt lye with thy stemme with a sandie Bay, which lyeth on the other side: and thou must take in thy maine saile, and go so till thou bring thy selfe open with the midst of the river; and so having opened the river, thou must go with great care in the middest of the same, with all thy sailes up, except thy maine saile, and thou must have thy boat out if it be needefull to sound or to tow thy ship, if she cast too much to the loofe, for the currents will cast here to the loofe: wherefore bee sure to have thy boat out to helpe thy steerage: and this is the way whereby thou must worke.
TEXTS USED IN LITTORAL
CARTOGRAPHY (for Christina Barroso)
Only the bird sees what I see,
the impassable ways in my hand,
a golden and ash-colored beauty,
the surprising accident
of a world drawn only once,
a thought construed of matter,
a painting missing its painter,
my secret universe.
Oceans, steppes, volcanoes, the humming
of their names from always younger mouths.
My making hand follows their forms,
vein, chasm, slope, ravine,
the hidden lines of strata and ore,
diary of desert, of wilderness, of mirroring sea,
that which I am.
Ice age, star time,
my past exists in locked-up images.
called out by fire and water,
a registry of resin and sand.
That is how I show myself,
how I hide myself,
in cyphers of height and depth,
layers of color
on an atlas as big as the world.
Measure, says the book of maps.
But given by whom?
Real for whom?
The tiny plane hovering above the shoreline,
shadow of Phoenician sails,
constellations, plumb line, calipers, ink,
the slow page from Strabo,
the prows of Aeneas, Odysseus,
or how the sea changes to paper,
the waves into words,
the exacting task of shrinking,
the art of meter and time.
The inner spectacle
piles question upon question.
Were the dogs visible on that spit of land?
The death of the flies, poison of the flowers,
the track of the enemy,
the surveyor in his hotel?
Who followed the train with the future dead,
measured the slowness of the way?
Fate is not set down on maps.
Fate is all ours.
Grids, shading, scale, the constraint
of coordinates, words of magic
for the world as a thing.
But I go with my living earth
of rivers and marshes, bends and willows,
which I compose in my image.
When I retrace them I leave my seal,
a map painted of soul.
About the Musicians
DUE EAST has performed in Brazil, Europe, Canada and the USA at venues such as the Warsaw Crossdrumming Festival, the Banff Centre for the Arts, the State University of São Paulo, and the Percussive Arts Society International Conventions in Texas, Tennessee and Ohio. Most recently, they were named winners of the 2008 National Flute Association Chamber Music Competition, held in Kansas City.
The duo has given recitals at performing arts series, such as Ke 'nek't (SUNY-Oswego) and Arts and Ideas (Lewis University); new music festivals (Greensboro, NC and Moline, IL); and universities across the
United States. In the summer of 2005, DUE EAST was invited to be an ensemble-in-residence at the Yellow Barn Chamber Music Festival.
DUE EAST actively promotes new music, and has commissioned several works. They have premiered works for Bargemusic (NYC), Wet Ink Musics (NYC), Composer's Concordance (NYC), Columbia University Composers Ensemble and Princeton University Composer's Ensemble. In conjunction with performance, Lesser and Beyer are frequently asked to present workshops for composers and instrumentalists on contemporary music and its various extended techniques for their respective instruments.
Hailed a fine percussionist" in the New York Times, Greg Beyer specializes in repertoire that places non-western instruments into the context of contemporary musical thought. Second-prize winner of the
2002 Geneva International Music Competition, Beyer has given solo performances and masterclasses throughout the United States, Europe, South America and in China. Beyer is an Assistant Professor of Percussion at Northern Illinois University, and endorses Bosphorus cymbals, Innovative Percussion sticks and mallets, and Pearl/Adams percussion instruments.
Recently called a "superb flutist" in The New York Times, Erin Lesser has performed as soloist and chamber musician throughout Canada, Europe, China, Brazil and the USA.
She is a founding member of Argento Chamber Ensemble, Due East, and Scarborough Trio, and also performs regularly with Wet Ink Ensemble. Festival appearances include: Shanghai Electroacoustic Music
Festival, Kilkenny Music Festival, Warsaw Crossdrumming Festival, Holland Festival, Ojai Music Festival (CA), International Spectral Music Festival (Istanbul), and Sounds French Festival (NYC). Erin recently completed a two-year fellowship in The Academy, a program run by Carnegie Hall, the Juilliard School, and the Weill Music Institute. Ms. Lesser is a Pearl Flute Performing Artist.
About the Composer
John Supko (b. 1980, NY) has studied music at the Levine School of Music in Washington, DC; at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music; at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris and the Schola
Cantorum in Paris, France; and at Princeton University, where he is currently a PhD candidate. He is the recipient of numerous prizes and grants, including the BMI Student Composer Award, the ASCAP/Morton Gould Young Composers Award, the Grand Prize of the National Young Composers Competition, the Perkins Prize of the Princeton University Music Department, a Fulbright Grant and a Meet the Composer Grant. His work has been published in collaborative editions with the poet Philippe Denis by Collection Memoires and, most recently, by Harpo. A new collaboration with writer Robert Fitterman, Dream Cuisine, will be premiered at Princeton in May 2007; www.johnsupko.com
About the Video Artist
Kristine Marx is a video and installation artist based in New York City. She has had solo exhibitions at Plane Space (New York City), Fringe (Los Angeles), the Berliner Liste with Herrmann & Wagner (Berlin), and an upcoming solo exhibition this winter at The Big & Small/Casual gallery (New York City). In addition to working as an artist, Marx writes essays and reviews on film for PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art and The Language Exchange, a website hosted by Sarah Lawrence College. She taught visual art at Parsons School of Design and is presently Assistant Professor of Art at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia.
Jomie Jazz Forum
recitals, new music, flute, multimedia
Arts and Humanities | Fine Arts | Music | Music Performance
Marshall University, "Marshall University Music Department Presents Due East, New Works for Flute and Percussion" (2009). All Performances. 510.