The Maryanne Amacher Foundation


  • Maryanne Amacher: Selected Writings and Interviews

    Maryanne Amacher: Selected Writings and Interviews

    Maryanne Amacher: Selected Writings and Interviews represents the first ever book-length collection devoted to the composer, whose life and work are as vast as they are as yet unknown. Situated at the very onset of serious study of her papers, Amy Cimini and Bill Dietz offer a heterodox and idiosyncratic selection of largely unpublished documents spanning the bandwidth of the still unprocessed contents of her archive. From personal notes and letters to program notes, manifesti, and unrealized project proposals, the documents are framed by longer interviews with Amacher that discuss corresponding periods of her life. The book’s otherwise chronological organization leads readers carefully into Amacher’s transforming musical thought, but the book also works strenuously against a definitive completism often associated with a “collected writings.” Rather, Dietz and Cimini redouble the archive’s unprocessed status as the book’s ethical mode of organization. Because Amacher worked across nearly every imaginable media format, this book will be of tremendous interest to theorists and practitioners in media and communications, urban design, contemporary art history, music studies, sound studies, film, radio, art criticism and performance studies.

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  • Maryanne Amacher: Petra LP/CD

    Maryanne Amacher: Petra

    Petra was originally commissioned for the ISCM World Music Days in Switzerland. Written for two pianos, the piece is a unique example of Amacher’s late work, a direct extension of her working methodologies for electronic composition taken into an acoustic realm that alludes to the music of Giacinto Scelsi and Galina Ustvolskaya. Petra is a sweeping, durational work based on both Amacher’s impressions of the church in Boswil where the piece was premiered and science-fiction writer Greg Bear’s short story of the same name, in which gargoyles come to life and breed with humans in a post-apocalyptic Notre Dame.

    This solemn interpretation of Petra was recorded at its 2017 American premiere at New York’s St. Peter’s Episcopal Church with pianists Marianne Schroeder, who originally performed the piece alongside Amacher in 1991, and Stefan Tcherepnin, who performed it alongside Schroeder in 2012 at Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin. Weighing tranquilizing passages of glacially-paced serenity against stretches of dilapidated, jagged dissonance, the recording illuminates a crucial node in the constellation of Amacher’s enigmatic oeuvre.

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  • Intelligent Life

    Blank Forms Journal 4: Intelligent Life

    Taking its name from Maryanne Amacher’s visionary, unrealized opera, the fourth issue of Blank Forms’ journal, Intelligent Life, includes a sort of titular essay, a rich analysis of Amacher’s Intelligent Life—the first such piece on this work—by Amacher scholar Amy Cimini. An incredibly prescient work that sought to upend any remaining vestiges of traditional operatic form and staging, Intelligent Life tells the story, set in 2021, of employees at Supreme Connections LLC, a futurist sonic entertainment corporation that formed following the collapse of a failed algorithmic music recommendation service. Cimini traces the technical and theoretical innovations with which Amacher imbued the work, situating it amid a detailed explication of Amacher’s still-overlooked practice.

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  • Music from the World Tomorrow

    Blank Forms Journal 2: Music From The World Tomorrow

    Maryanne Amacher remains a focal point of the second issue of Blank Forms’ journal, with three pieces related to Blank Forms’ work with the pioneering sound artist’s archive: scholar Amy Cimini contributes a text detailing the genesis, score, and theoretical underpinnings of Amacher’s Adjacencies; Joan Brigham presents Scott Fisher’s account of his career working with virtual reality and 3D stereoscopic imaging (photo examples included) and its intersections with Amacher, most notably at MIT’s legendary Center for Advanced Visual Studies; and an excerpt from science fiction writer Olaf Stapledon’s Last and First Men—a favorite of Amacher’s—is reproduced, telling of a speculative race of sadistic humans with highly developed ears who, forty million years in the future, grapple with an all-too-familiar narrative of music’s divine nature reduced to profanity by power.

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    Blank Forms Journal 1: MAGAZINE

    MAGAZINE is the inaugural issue of Blank Forms’ journal, bringing together a combination of never-before published, lost, and new materials that supplement the non-profit’s live programs. It is envisioned as a platform for critical reflection and extended dialogue between scholars, artists, and other figures working within the world of experimental music and art.

    The journal is bookended by four texts surrounding the practice of pioneering sound artist Maryanne Amacher; an essay by Bill Dietz on his collaborations with Amacher and his work with her archive; an unpublished 1988 interview highlighting Amacher’s ideas around her Long Distance Music and Mini Sound Series; a conversation between Marianne Schroeder, Stefan Tcherepnin, and Lawrence Kumpf revealing the archival questions raised by Amacher’s work; and science fiction writer Greg Bear’s short story PetrClick here to purchasetale of gargoyles coming to life and breeding with humans in a post-apocalyptic Notre Dame, from which Amacher’s 1991 piece got its name.

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