Clusterfuck (2019): Performance for Violin, Cello, Electric Bass, Trombone Student, and Classical Guitar - with Musical Samples by J.S. Bach and Text by Steven Jesse Bernstein "Come Out Tonight." Recorded at Yale Center for Collaborative Arts and Media (CCAM).
This is a sort of performance collage for multiple performers, drawing from blatantly plagiarized musical "samples" from a few J.S. Bach works - the Prelude from Cello Suite No. 1, BWV 1007 and the Chaconne from Violin Partita No. 2, BWV 1004, which are cut up and scrambled in fragmented bits, interspersed with text and mistakes or awkward pauses and played on instruments so severely detuned that the music is almost completely unrecognizable. The text I chose for this piece is "Come Out Tonight," a poem by the writer and performance artist Steven Jesse Bernstein, whose work interests me for its esoteric, cryptic and often surreal nature. Additional roles in the performance are the "Trombone Student" who (badly) practices various major scales, shouts text fragments, and makes angry trombone noises; and a Bass player, who makes noise on a detuned electric bass through distortion (fun fact - we didn't have a distortion pedal at this performance so had to make do without so you won't hear it here unfortunately!) and also shouts short text fragments. Below are excerpts from the score.