December 24, 2004
Scott Brickman, associate professor of music and education, at the University of Maine at Fort Kent recently had his electro-acoustic composition Signature: Peace, released on a CD produced by Capstone Records.
The digital audio work was composed in 2003 as part of the 60X60 venue, sponsored by the New York New Music organization Vox Novus.
60 x 60 is a concert designed of 60 works by 60 composers, 60 seconds or less in length in order to create a continuous one hour-long concert.
The sixty recorded pieces, also referred to as "signature works", were performed in conjunction with multimedia and an analog clock marking the passage of time. Each piece started at the beginning of each minute and ended 60 seconds later to the beginning of another. Works less than 60 seconds were padded with time before or after the work.
Vox Novus offers the presentation of serious works by established and emerging composers.
"Signature Peace was inspired by my memories of a world less involved in terrorism and war," said Brickman. "Given the opportunity to say something as a signature, I said Peace."
The piece was composed using Sine waves, Midi files, and the word peace spoken in Arabic and Hebrew, transformed with audio editing software.
The Vox Novus 60X60 venue was presented nine times since its debut in New York City in November 2003, with additional productions internationally including Bucharest, Romania, and Istanbul, Turkey.
At the performances of April 28-30 and May 2, of 2004 at the One Arm Red in D.U.M.B.O. in Brooklyn, New York, Vox Novus collaborated with the underground film artist Nick Zedd to create a DVD visual to be played in conjunction with the concert.
The collaboration led to Zedd using Signature: Peace as music included in his most recent film, Electra Elf, a superhero fantasy.
"I was a bit apprehensive about the avante-garde film idiom," said Brickman. "It seems to remind me most of 2001: A Space Odyssey. The more I thought about it I decided not to pass up this opportunity."
Capstone Records, founded in the 1980's by Rey Weidenaar of Patterson College in New Jersey and Richard Brooks of Nassau Community College on Long Island, New York now has 130 titles in its catalog, and specializes in contemporary classical music.
"Our artists know that we are making our selections solely on the quality of the work," said Brooks. "They know we make a conscious effort to include a broad spectrum of styles and approaches without assuming any aesthetic bias."
"Our distributor, Albany Music, gets our records into stores all over the country, and we are beginning to work with several European distributors," added Brooks. "We send promotional mailings to our list of classical radio stations and reviewers, and we put ads in the Calendar of New Music, Fanfare Magazine and others."
This is Brickman's second composition released on a commercial CD. Sketches of Maine was recorded on the New Ariel label by pianist Jeffrey Jacob.
Reflecting on this occasion, Brickman believes he is "lucky because I have many senior colleagues at other institutions, who haven't yet had these fortunate situations. Additionally, I sense that I will have other opportunities in the future."
Brickman who was born in Oak Park, Illinois holds a B.M. from the University of Wisconsin and a Ph.D. in Music Theory/Composition from Brandeis University.
His instrumental and electronic compositions have been performed in over half of the continental United States as well as in Brazil, Canada, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Portugal, Romania, the United Kingdom and Yugoslavia.
Brickman teaches music theory and history at UMFK, where he is the chair of the arts and humanities division. He is the co-chair of the New England Region of the Society of Composers, Inc. and is also treasurer of the Northeast Chapter of the College Music Society.
He has taught at the Chautauqua Institution, as well as having served as a reader for the High School Advanced Placement Music Exam.