Aus Verstreutem ein Ganzes
for prepared Tuba, 1992

"Aus Verstreutem ein Ganzes" ("making a whole of the scattered”) is based on works of Erika Stuermer-Alex, an artist well known for her perfect collage technique. Many of her pieces were created in junk yards, streets, or objects found in demolished houses, from things that lay about. As she states, she aims to make a unified whole from these elements. Her methods inspired me to approach composing in the same manner. Aus Verstreutem ein Ganzes (for Tuba and Tape) uses the sounds of 66 percussion instruments. Their sounds have been sampled and distributed among the keys of a keyboard, so that they can be played together by means of computer. At first an accompanying tape was created with these sounds, to which the live instrumentalist would add additional sounds in concert. I gave this accompanying tape to the tubist Michael Vogt and asked him to improvise to it. Following the principal "making a whole of the scattered” I had him take apart his tuba in such a way that the various parts were exchanged with parts of other instruments, resulting in a mixture that would be absolutely useless for conventional concert music. In addition, I had him 2 garden hoses to his tuba that led the sounds into two buckets, an empty one and one filled with water. Thus the "reassembled" tuba seems to sound naturally filtered from different directions.