Black Book

June 15, 2018

BlackBook Exclusive: Stunning Portrait Gallery From Moogfest 2018

The New York Times

May 21, 2018

At Moogfest, Electronics Stimulate Ears and Emotions

Suzanne Ciani and Layne

“The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” the 1920 German expressionist horror film, got a live, surround-sound score by the pioneering synthesizer composer Suzanne Ciani and her recent collaborator, Layne, performing with a small ensemble including a flutist and a singer. The foundation was a minor chord and a recurring sequence; above it were ghostly whispers and sporadic, three-dimensional whirlwinds of dissonance.

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Resident Advisor

May 24, 2018

Moogfest 2018: Five key performances

Suzanne Ciani + Layne 

The Italian composer Suzanne Ciani, who played the first-ever Moogfest in 2004, performed inside Durham Armory on Thursday night, presenting a surround-sound score for the German silent horror film The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari. In an all-female quintet, she patched eerie sounds across a Buchla synthesizer, accompanied by a cellist, a
flautist, and field recording experimentalist Layne. 

While the venue's concrete floor didn't make for a comfortable cinema—especially for reading subtitles—the performance enveloped the audience, thanks to the Spatial Sound setup. A simple cello stroke shook the whole room. The quintet used recurring sounds and sonic signifiers at key moments to build suspense and deliver a crescendo at the climax—it was a horror flick after all. 

Consequence of Sound

May 21, 2018

Uncanny Synthesis: Moogfest 2018 Festival Review

The Spatial Scoring of The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari: The Diva of the Diode, Suzanne Ciani, returned to Moogfest, bringing with her a newly scored soundtrack to the German expressionist film The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari. The haunting classic was utterly transformed by Ciani, who performed her signature Buchla synthesizer alongside field-recording artist Layne and student electronic musicians from the Berklee College of Music. Caligari is an already dreamlike work, but Ciani and co. powerfully amplified the dreaminess and darkness of the film into a twinkling nightmare.

 

The dynamism of the new composition was further enhanced by the Meyer Sound-provided spatial speaker system, which flung notes around the performance space and ensured that when violence occurred onscreen, the sound attacked you. Ciani conjured arpeggiated motifs that morphed and transformed in representation: a ticking clock becomes a limping man, becomes a murder. It’s an experience we’d gladly tell you to seek out, but unless something changes, this was the first and the last time that her Caligari score will be performed. Just one of the many exclusive experiences that defines Moogfest.

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