The idea of exploring important 20th century electro-acoustic compositions within their historically informed performance practices, and using this as the basis for the production of a new interpretation in 5.1 surround sound, has created quite a stir. It originated at the Institute for Computer Music and Sound Technology (ICST) at the Zurich University of the Arts, and found its expression in the double SACD Les Espaces Électroacoustiques I. — This album now brings us further milestones of electro-acoustic music in appropriate and informed renditions: from Luigi Nono’s first studio work, through the production of serial electronic sounds which Gottfried Michael Koenig carried out in the WDR studio in Cologne as early as 1955, to Karlheinz Stockhausen’s piece Contacts, an early example of successful dialogue between instruments and electronics, as well as Luciano Berio’s Altra Voce, a kind of echo of the “azione musicale” Cronaca del Luogo, which premiered at the Salzburg Festival in 1999.
This SACD is intended as a complement to the release Les espaces electroacoustiques, Masterpieces of electroacoustic music presented in 5.1 surround and stereo, published by col legno in 2016. Like its predecessor, the album at hand presents a selection of historically significant works with electronics that were originally conceived for multichannel formats and are made available for the first time in surround. The first issue’s positive reception, reflecting a strong interest in this repertoire and a growing awareness of the necessity of adequate and historically informed performances, has been a major motivation behind this project.
Both SACDs reflect key issues studied in several projects on performance practice of electroacoustic music realized at the Institute for Computer Music and Sound Technology of the Zurich University of the Arts since 2012. This publication represents the preliminary conclusion of studies on the early production of composers associated with the Studio di Fonologia della RAI di Milano and WDR’s Studio für elektronische Musik at Cologne, as well as composers represented in the collection of the Paul Sacher Foundation, Basle.