Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 - 1767) composed a collection of six sonatas for flute duet, all sharing a common feature: they are canons at the unison. In performance of these "canonic sonatas", the players share a single part: the leader starting and the follower entering some number of beats later at the start of the same music. Apart from some minor details, the second player in this arrangement is a hyper-analog delay pedal; perfect for the 18th century, but this century is all about digitizing the analog world.


CALL AND RESPONSE brings Telemann's music into the digital age. Utilizing Max/MSP, the sonatas are realized with a single player and electronic delay. To further explore the possibilities posed by the Telemann pieces, six composers have taken one of Telemann's sonatas and composed pieces that expand upon the canonic concept in a variety of ways:



Sonata No. 1 - Saad HaddadTwo Tashilu

Two Tashilu (“cellos” in Arabic), scored for digitally processed cello, lasts approximately three minutes. At the bequest of cellist/composer Daron Kirsch, it was written as an interlude to be performed between the first and second movements of Georg Telemann’s Six Canonic Sonatas. The first half of the work features the solo cellist ‘echoed’ by a digital second cellist that isn’t yet fully realized, yearning to find its place. By the second half, this ghost cellist plays in canon with the live cellist, forming the link between this piece and the Telemann. All the processing heard in Two Tashilu is configured live onstage, so the ‘ghost’ you are hearing, in fact, is the live cellist reincarnated digitally in real time.

Sonata No. 2 - Roger ZareTwo Canons

I wrote two movements that tie into Telemann’s second sonata, borrowing some small details, but in large part exploring very different territory. The first movement, Dirge, starts and ends on G, as the Telemann does, and the meter and single measure interval of imitation are borrowed from the first movement. The second movement takes its compound meter from Telemann’s second and third movements, and its pitch center from the second movement, and the swinging octave figures from the third movement.



Sonata No. 5 - Everette MinchewGett Off My Lawn

Sonata No. 6 - Daron Kirsch, TBD