The Bermuda Triangle
A Science Fiction Fantasy.Tomita´s Sound Performance with Ron Hays
Monday, September 27, 1982
Brucknerhaus, Main Hall
Realized with the friendly support of MOBIL OIL AUSTRIA AG
This project of Ars Electronica unites for the first time two pioneers of electronics for joint artistical work: Isao Tomita, the star of electronics, who uses the synthesizer for the interpretation of classical compositions, and Ron Hays, pioneering in the field of electronical visualization of music, the most distinguished multi-media artist of the time.
With "Star Wars'', outer space has become an artistic challenge for both: for Tomita in his electronic interpretation of John Williams' "Star Wars Theme" at a gigantic electronics performance in Budokan (Japan) and for Ron Hays, who attracted an audience of over a hundred thousand spectators with his "Star Wars Concerts".
The audience in the Main Hall of the Brucknerhaus will also be guided through outer space by Tomita and Hays: The spectator is surrounded by music from a special five-channel pyramid system invented by Tomita. The opus starts with a Hommage to Anton Bruckner, with Bruckner's music symbolizing the enormous extension of outer space.
Isao Tomita on his impressions connected with this event:Conductor: Isao Tomita
"A storm rages in the ocean near Bermuda—the area of mysterious disappearances of many ships and aircrafts, the dreaded Devil's Triangle. In the mist of the storm something approaches from the sky guided by an eerie signal from below the water. It is a craft from outer space—an UFO. The fantasy conjures up a gigantic pyramid built on the bottom of the sea by a highly civilized ancient people. They have contact with outer space and guide the UFO to the pyramid. The story unfolds through the moods of the music: friendly encounter, exploration of the earth and the sky, exchange of information and finally revelation of the way to achieve a super-dimension world and we are left with sweet melody once more as the UFO departs into space…—all of which we are drawn into by and experience in our fantasy, through the stimulus of sound and Ron Hays' Video-Art.
Perhaps this is a new concept: science fiction in sound. Can we overcome through this the realities of everyday life, our time and physical limitation and contact our fantasy, our imagination? We can, and thus we are able to reach out into the limitless space, to touch the super-intellect, be any object or being and cast ourselves, all powerful, into the universe.''
ISAO TOMITA AND THE PLASMA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Assistant conductor: Roland mc-8/mc-4
Concert Master: Moog III 1st violin: Moog III /Moog system 55
2nd violin: Roland System 100
Viola: Synclavier II
Flute, Piccolo: Moog III /Synclavier II
Oboe, English Horni Prophet 5/Synclavier II
Clarinet, Bass-Clarinet: Prophet 5
Bassoon: Moog III /Yamaha CS 80
Horn: Synclavier II /Moog III /Emulator (Mute-Roland GE-810)
Trumpet: Synclavier II /Prophet 5 (Mute-Roland GE-810)
Trombone: Moog III (Mute-Roland GE-810)
Tuba: Moog III
Percussion: Linn LM-1/Drum Computer/Roland Rhythm-Composer TR 808
Timpani: Emulator Harp Yamaha CS 80/Roland Jupiter 4
Guitar: Synclavier II
Piano: Yamaha Automatic Piano /Synclavier II
Celesta: Prophet 5/Synclavier II
Whistler: Moog III
Choir: Mellotron /Roland Vocoder Pulse VP-330/ Yamaha CS 80
MUSIC PROGAM: Anton Bruckner: Symphony No. 4, 3rd Movement
Isao Tomita: The Arrival of UFO and the Mysterious Electric Waves
Sergej Prokofieff: Romeo and Juliet, Suite No. 2: Montagues and Capulets
Ian Sibelius: Valse Triste
Sergej Prokofieff: The Adoration of Veles and Ala
Isao Tomita: Bridge
Maurice Ravel: Ma Mere l'Oie Suite: Les Entretiens de la Belle et de la Bête
Maurice Ravel: Ma Mere l'Oie Suite: Laideronnette, Imperatrice des Pagodes
Isao Tomita: Dororo
Sergej Prokofieff: Violin Concerto No. 1, Andantino
Sergej Prokofieff: Symphony No. 6, Allegro Moderato
Modest Moussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition: Samuel Goldenberg and Schmuyle
Johann Sebastian Bach: Three-Part Inventions, No. 2 in C minor
Gustav Hoist: The Planets: Mars
Isao Tomita: Bridge
Gustav Holst: The Planets: Mercury
Sergej Prokofieff: Symphony No. 6, Allegro Moderato
Gustav Host: The Planets: Jupiter
Isao Tomita: Bridge
Sergej Prokofieff: Scythian Suite: The Adoration of Veles and Ala
Ian Sibelius: Valse Triste Vocoder
Igor Strawinsky: Firebird Suite
Anton Bruckner: Symphony No. 4, 3rd Movement
ISAO TOMITA The world famous greatest synthesist, Isao Tomita was born in Tokyo in 1932. He studied music under the composers Kishio Hirao and Kojiro Kubone while he was at the Keio University. He started his activity as a composer during his school days and wrote excellent music for motion pictures and television programs.
But the work which spread his name throughout the world conclusively was his first album by synthesizers entitled "SNOWFLAKES ARE DANCING", a world of fairy tales from Debussy's compositions. This album was first released in the United States in 1974 and became a great sensation immediately. The synthesizer music at that time, represented by "Switched On Bach'' had a narrow, mechanical and thin sound, and people were losing interest in it. On the other hand, Tomita's work, with its thickness in sounds, its careful constitution and coloring, its expression and deep depth, exceeded the usual synthesizer music overwhelmingly. The world was astonished at the broader expression of his work to which no orchestra could oppose. In 1975, the year following its release, this album was nominated for "Album of the Year" and in three other categories of the Grammy Awards. It was the first time that a Japanese had been nominated. In addition, it was selected as the "Best Classical Record of 1974" by N.A.R.M. (National Association of Record Merchandisers), the most important award for record sales in the United States.
After that he made hits in succession and his status was firmly established: ''PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION" received N.A.R.M.'s the "Best Classical Record of 1975" and an award for the planning of the album at the Japanese Record Grand Prix in 1975. Then he released "FIREBIRD" also in 1975 and it scored another success.
In addition to being supported by classical music fans, he become idolized among rock musicians. As a matter of fact, many rock musicians coming to Japan visited his studio.
"PLANETS'' released in 1977 became his biggest hit. This work composed by the modern British composer Gustav Holstwas arranged for synthesizer by Tomita. It was a space drama on a magnificent scale that began with a blast sound of a rocket and gave listeners the feeling of searching a planet in a space ship. This album was ranked the top position in the United States classical record charts (Billboard and Cash Box magazines) for the second time, following "PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION''. This record should be called the masterpiece of the world-shocking space sounds of Tomita, and the special recording effect named "Biphonic Sound" enabled listeners to hear sounds even from outside of the speakers. It became a topic.
After ''PLANETS", two space music albums entitled "KOSMOS'' (1978) and ''BERMUDA TRIANGLE'' (1978) were released, and these formed a trilogy of space sounds. With "BERMUDA TRIANGLE'' Tomitas experimented with the new technique of mixing the sound in not only an horizontal dirction but also a vertical one. This album was nominated in the category of the "Best Engineered Record Classics" of the Grammy Award (the second time for him) in 1979.
Then he released "DAPHNIS ET CHLOE" in 1979 after the space trilogy. This was the album that brushed up the illusional sounds and the brilliant beauty in color much more than those in his first album of Debussy. This album guided the listeners into a fantastic dream world. In this year, the readers of the American ''Contemporary Keyboard'' Magazine voted him the ''Best Studio Synthesist" for his distinguished services so far.
That is a sketch of Isao Tomita's life in record business. His records are sold not only in Japan and the United States but also almost all over the world. All of them have made big hits and received many awards and/or prizes everywhere in the world. He has sold over one million LP's in Japan. The most remarkable thing is that he has created all the sounds in his symphonic synthesizer music by himself. This is apt to be overlooked.
Besides the work for synthesizers, he composed music for grand television dramas, broadcast for a year, such as "Hanano Shogai'' (1960), "Ten-to Chi-to" (1969), "Shin Heke Monogratan" (1972), and "Katsu Kaishu'' (1974). He wrote the opening and closing music for television programs such as "Shin-Nihon Kilko", "Gendaino Eizp'', and "Kaikyo". He also composed for the motion pictures "Senya Ichiya Monogatari", "Kga Kaikyo", and "Nosutradams-no Daiyogen". He received a Television Grand Prix in 1974 for his contribution to television culture.
WORKS ARRANGED OR COMPOSED FOR SYNTHESIZER AND PERFORMED BY ISAO TOMITA Debussy
Snowflakes are Dancing - from "Children's Corner'' No. 4
Gardens in the Rain - from "Estampes" No. 3
Claire de Lune - from Suite "Bergamasque" No. 3
Arabesque No. 1
The Engulfed Cathedral - from "Preludes, Book " No. 10
Passepied - from Suite "Bergamasque" No. 4
The Girl with the Flaxen Hair - from "Preludes, Book I" No. 8
Golliwog´s Cakewalk - from "Children's Corner'' No. 8
Footprints in the Snow - from "Preludes, Book I'' No. 6
Pictures at an Exhibition
Promenade—Gnomes—Promenade—The Old Castle—Promenade—Tuileries—Bydlo—Promenade—Ballet of the Chicks in their Shell—Samuel Goldenberg and Schmuyle—The Market Place at Limoges—Catacombs—Cum Mortuis in Lingua Mortua—The Hut of Baba Yaga—The Great Gate at Kiev
Suite from ''The Firebird"
Introduction—The Firebird and its Dance—Variation of the Firebird —The Round of the Princesses Internal Dance of King Kastchei—Lullaby —Finale
Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun
A Night on Bald Mountain
Suite "The Planets''
I. Mars, II. Venus, III. Mercury, IV. Jupiter, V. Saturn, VI. Uranus, VII. Neptune
Star Wars Theme
J. S. Bach
The Sea Names „Solaris“
Montagues and Capulets - from "Romeo And Juliet" Suite No. 2
The Adoration of Veles and Ala - from "Scythian Suite''
Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Allegro marcato—from Symphony No. 5
Andante—from Violin Concerto No. 1 in D
Allegro moderato—from Symphony No. 6
Moderato /Allegro moderato—from Violin Concerto No. 1 in D
"Daphnis et Chloe" Suite No. 2
Lever du Jour—Pantomime—Danse general
Pavane pour une infante defunte
Ma mere l´oie
Pavane de la belle au bois dormant—Petit poucet—Laideronnette, imperatrice des Pagodes—Les entretiens de la belle et de la bete—Le jardin feerique
RON HAYS Ron Hays visualizes music using computers, lasers, video and film techniques. His work with visual music has been supported for eight years by the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations, the National Endowment for the Arts, MIT, and the entertainment industry.
Ron is the creator of the first full multimedia visual music concerts which integrate lights and lasers, widescreen video, and film projections of "Music Images'': multi-image slides and pyrotechnique, fireworks and special stage effects. He won an Emmy for his video visual effects and is the first visual music artist/producer to have his work distributed commercially world wide.
After graduating from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in radio, television and film, he produced over 100 television programs for WCAU-TV, CBS in Philadelphia, receiving the 1968 Broadcast Media Award and the AMA Program of the Year Award in the process.
Ron's first piece of visualized music, Ravel's "Daphnis and Chloe" commissioned by RCA, won the Third International Festival of Short Films in 1970. This led to a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, in association with WGBH-TV, Boston, and the Rockefeller Foundation.
Ron's first major work, "The Prelude and Liebestod'' from Wagner's "Tristan und Isolde", was commissioned by Leonard Bernstein and broadcast nationwide during Mr. Bernstein's Norton Lecture Series at Harvard. It has since been broadcast in many other countries and has brought Ron Hays international artistic renown.
Two and a half years later, Ron was awarded a second Rockefeller grant to study the applications of music and image in multimedia situations at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT. With this grant, Ron was to research multimedia technology and new video and film projection formats.
After moving to Hollywood five years ago, Ron began to work with television producers and film-makers. He created the music image sequences for SGT. PEPPER'S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND, DEMON SEED and CAN'T STOP THE MUSIC. Ron won his Emmy for the "Krofft Superstar Hour" and he also created the special effects for the "Logan's Run" television series.
Over 150,000 people have attended the STAR WARS Concerts in the United States and in Montreal, Canada that Ron directed. The ODYSSEY, on both video cassette and disc, is available in 14,000 retail stores throughout the world. Ron's first dome show, "Synesphere: A Music-image Odyssey'', has been shown for a six month period in Tucson, Arizona at the Flandrau Planetarium. Ron has created the images for many promotional tapes by major artists, including Manhattan Transfer, Donna Summer and, most recently, "Earth, Wind and Fire".
Ron Hays:Since the days when Walt Disney brought to the screen an artistic revolution called "Fantasia'', the field of visual music has not evolved at the pace of its own technology. Ron Hays, the world renowned Emmy winning visual music artist/producer is one of the few exceptions—his visions of magic and wizardry have mesmerized audiences the world over.
Through the use of video, film and multimedia techniques, Ron has developed a unique and exciting gift. Putting all his "media types" together, he has entertained thousands as the director of the first multimedia "Star Wars Concerts''. The first electronically animated visual music laser disc is "Odyssey'' by Ron Hays, which is now selling in over 14,000 retail outlets worldwide and is proving to be yet another of Ron's critical and financial successes. Ron's work on certain special effects for Sgt. Pepper's , Demon Seed, Can't Stop The Music and Grease, to highlight a few, continues to bring him success.
As entrepreneur, Ron has conquered the challenge that so many artists face—''the myth of the struggling artist". Ron has integrated his artistic gifts with a keen "business sensibility" that make his production company a model for all artists working on the cutting edge of entertainment technology. Bringing all these talents together, Ron successfully leads us into the new world of electronic and computer animation, music, lasers and multi-media special effects, composing for us his vision of music.