Exercise in Compensated Consistency

for string duo & electronics
premiere by Gabriela Diaz (violin) and Benjamin Schwartz (cello) of Calithumpian Consort in May 2012.
Exercise in Compensated Consistency tests the ability of a pair of performers to produce a consistent musical phrase through a constantly varying computer processing system. The two players begin by playing a single pitch at constant rhythm, while a computer records their signal and plays it back. Their goal is to keep the computer output the same, but the computer slowly begins to change their playback pitch and rhythm, forcing the players to alter their individual speeds and pitches to offset the changes. As the piece progresses, the pitch and speed changes grow increasingly larger, forcing the players to anticipate and react to processes occurring at an increasingly large temporal offset. At the point when the required offsets exceed the instruments' capabilities, the performers cease playing, and the computer playback finishes the piece.
Click to view the score