A projective opera in seven planes
It is generally accepted that artistic creativity and scientific research share categories, attitudes and values to an extent that goes beyond what one might deduce from their more immediate goals, and also other objectives which are considered characteristic of each of these activities. Beauty, intuition, elegance, the intimate feeling of perfection finally achieved, these are shared cultural values that bring about vivid and very direct communication between scientists and artists who share the same delight in the creation of universes.
It is now one hundred years since the revolution of the theory of relativity replaced Newton’s model of absolute time with its uniform and universal flux, introducing the fourth geometric dimension. Today, new breakthroughs in physics, both theoretical and observational, suggest that there may well exist as many as seven additional geometric dimensions. The hidden or invisible nature of these dimensions is generally attributed to their hyper-microscopic condition.
In her book Warped passages, Lisa Randall has managed to transmit to a very wide public this effort to capture the nature of the ultimate reality which we are part of. The so-called Randall- Sundrum models I and II constitute a special class of theories where the warped nature of these dimensions – and not their smallness – is the reason for their hidden nature. These specific models, and very especially the overall picture they give of the fundamental interactions of physics, have provided me with the opportunity to construct a symbolic space of great richness that may be used as a framework for musical composition; a framework where the instrumentation and orchestration, the sung music and the electronic techniques in real time are able to generate and provide new acoustic experiences.
Thus, an exciting musical project was born on the basis of a proposal from the Festival d’Òpera de Butxaca de Barcelona in 2006, and it was produced by the IRCAM-Centre Pompidou and the Ensemble intercontemporain, with the support of the Fondation Hermès (Paris), the Department of Culture of the Generalitat de Catalunya and the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona. It has been a great satisfaction to be able to count on Lisa Randall herself as the librettist and the inspiration for this work: the projective opera Hypermusic Prologue.
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