a loud whisper – Preparing Charlie Sdraulig’s ‘few’

I’m co-hosting a house concert and am preparing pieces for performance by Jessie Marino, Luke Nickel, David Pocknee, Charlie Sdraulig and myself. While I’ve been working on Charlie Sdraulig’s few (for solo voice) I’ve been getting an itch to reflect on the preparation process. The following is an attempt to work out some of the tangled connections of associations twisting around in my head as I engage with the piece. My plan is to write about the piece as new ideas and thoughts emerge.


I’ll let Charlie’s description of the piece set the scene:

few is for a person listening and responding to the sonic environment around them. Responses include: breath filtered through a variety of mouth shapes as well as tongue clicks, hums and whistles. These barely externalised sounds are an almost imperceptible trace of concentrated perceptual effort. There is often only a risk of these sounds being produced and then heard.[1]

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