MUSIC AND GILES "DENMARK" MITCHELL





During my teenager years - i gave up playing bach or beethoven - and learnt the joys of improvisation - and how time, space, and sensation of being creates a dialogue with playing what one feels. I had a piano teacher who gave me an hour and half every saturday to play on her grand piano, a short walk from my home in Nottingham. When at Trent Poly doing fine art - i was seduced by the sythesiser - Synthi A - and I created performance works for rooms with sliding doors, with 3 reel to reel tape recorders all connected to one tape and a Concerto for synthi and   oscilloscope - this was in 1970-1 and available to use in my compositions. This was perhaps related to the pioneer of electronic music  Tristram Cary -  (known for creating Doctor Who and Dalek music and sound effects) an English-Australian  composer who while working as a radar engineer for the Royal Navy during World War II, he independently developed his own conception of electronic and tape music. In 1973 I corresponded with Tristram - as I wanted input as to where to develop in experimental electronic music - and he wrote me a thoughtful lengthy letter. Later in 1974-5 unfortunately my ears were blown out from sound, and when I was in post grad the Slade School of Art - where they had a computer in 1974 - if i played the piano all i could hear was a drum sound. So i I wanted to go to MIT to create computer controlled music installations. Over the years I had researched and listened to all the experimental composers at the time ( at Trent Poly - Michael Nyman was my visiting tutor - during thos glorious times wonderful times one could choose), and i would go to talks by contemporary composers. I contacted John Cage in New York to see if he had anything that could help me in going to MIT. Here is what John Cage sent me in 1995 - when I was at the Slade and living in London.

letter from john cage to Giles Mitchell 1975 about MIT contacts

Letter   recieved from John Cage with details about contacts for going to MIT including Stephen Smolian and Luis Frangella

giles denmark creates

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