Vox Magna

Pete Stollery

Vox Magna has been performed in Aberdeen, Arc-et-Senans, Belfast, Birmingham, Brussels, Edinburgh, Los Angeles, Manchester, Montréal and New York City…

Vox Magna comprises a set of fragmented recollections, a piecing together of the failing memory of an industrial era involved with the taming of the chemical, the electrical and the mechanical; an era of large machines housed in immense, purpose built spaces. It is at once evocative of something very British: an industry whose decaying remains still mark numerous landscapes and people within the north of England and Scotland.

Many images presented are vast, suggesting height as well as depth, as though taken with a wide-angle lens looking up. The listener is pulled rather than invited into the image, sometimes dangerously close to massive, unknown forces, sometimes at a more reflective distance.

It is the very rhythm of the machines, their perpetual motion, which sets the pacing for Vox Magna. Behind the abrupt changes, guttering and fading of the sonic vistas there is still the relentless pulse of the machine.” — Robert Dow


Vox Magna was realized in the studios at the University of Aberdeen (Scotland) and the composer’s own studio and premiered on March 21, 2003 during the Rien à voir (13) concert series presented by Réseaux at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal. It received Special Prize in the Musica Nova 2003 International Competition of Electroacoustic Music (Prague, Czech Republic) and was pre-selected for the 32nd Bourges International Electroacoustic Music and Sonic Art Competition (France, 2005).

Premiere

  • March 21, 2003, Rien à voir (13): InvisiblEARTS + concert solo, Salle Beverley Webster Rolph — Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Montréal (Québec)

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