Monday, January 20, 2014

Notations 22: Chessa and Hoffman

Here's the twenty-second installment of Notations! Inspired by Cage's 1969 bookNotations is a collection of graphic scores, hand drawn music calligraphy, computer code, compositional sketches, text scores, and other innovative forms of musical notation.

Every Monday we'll showcase notation by two different composers, primarily focusing on those local to Los Angeles. This week's composers are Luciano Chessa and Kristian Hoffman. All images are used with permission, and copyright is retained by each piece's respective creator. Click on the images to see a larger view.

Var. XXII: Valsugana (from Variazioni Su Un Oggetto Di Scena)
by Luciano Chessa

Luciano Chessa received a Ph.D. in musicology from the University of California–Davis; at the Conservatory of Bologna he earned a D.M.A. in piano and a M.A. in composition. His research focuses on twentieth-century and experimental music and can be found in Musica e Storia (Levi Foundation, Venice); he is the author of Luigi Russolo, Futurist (University of California Press), the first English monograph dedicated to the Art of Noises. Chessa is active as a composer, performer and conductor. Recent compositions include A Heavenly Act, an opera with video by Kalup Linzy commissioned by SFMOMA for Nicole Paiement and Ensemble Parallèle. Chessa's Futurist expertise resulted in a commission by New York City's Biennial PERFORMA to direct the first reconstruction of Russolo's intonarumori orchestra and to curate/ conduct concerts which received a "Best of 2009" mention in the New York Times. In March 2011 Chessa conducted a soldout intonarumori concert for Berliner Festspiele-Maerzmusik Festival; in December, for Art Basel Miami Beach, he conducted the New World Symphony with Lee Ranaldo in the premiere of Ranaldo's It All Begins Now!

More info on Wikipedia

I Like to Be Clean by Kristian Hoffman

Kristian Hoffman first emerged during the late 1970s as songwriter and keyboardist for New York City cult favorite the Mumps, and was also an active figure in the No Wave, performing alongside the likes of Lydia Lunch and the Contortions, and playing keys and singing on the James White and the Blacks LP Off White. As a member of Bleaker St. Incident, with Ann Magnuson and Robert Mache, he spearheaded the "anti-folk" movement. Concurrently he was in the lounge rock band The Swinging Madisons, and was the original musical director for Klaus Nomi, writing many of Nomi's best known songs. Kristian released his fourth solo album, Fop, on Kayo Stereophonic Records, in September 2010. It was met with overwhelming critical praise, making it one of the best reviewed albums of the year. A sample review from the highly regarded Magnet Magazine: "Hoffman’s latest solo LP is Fop (Kayo Stereophonic), and it’s a 17-song masterpiece sure to blow your mind." 

More info at

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