John Young's 'Magnetic Resonance' wins 1st prize at Musica Nova 2018

MTI's Professor of Composition, John Young, has won first prize at Musica Nova 2018, in the instrumental category, for his work 'Magnetic Resonance':

'Magnetic Resonance' (2017) was created for pianist Xenia Pestova and the magnetic resonator piano developed by Andrew McPherson at the Queen Mary University of London. The magnetic resonator mechanism is a non-invasive extension of the instrument that can be applied to any grand piano. It allows for infinite resonance of piano tones beyond the normal attack-decay model of the instrument, but also permits conventional performance at any time. This work exploits this 'hybrid' nature of the instrument as well as its capacity to produce tones without the attack-based morphology produced by the hammers. The work's harmonic structure is enhanced with the integration of 8 channels of electroacoustic sound. These convey further expanded energy profiles and spectral constructs and project the piano-centric sonority into an immersive sound field. They are triggered by the pianist in real-time using the MIDI output of the instrument's Moog Piano Bar.

Musica Nova is a competition for composers of electroacoustic music, held in Prague. The competition was first held in 1969 and now features two categories of entry, one for tape music and another for music including vocals and instrumentals.