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Michael Edwards is a British composer, based in Edinburgh, who developed a range of musical computer techniques ranging from real-time digital instruments to self-contained, algorithmic environments. His composition for piano and computer For Rei As A Doe, was originally written for Japanese pianist Rei Nakamura and reflects long years of practicing the vipassana meditation.
It is a slow and quiet piece, in which silence has an equal role to the piano or subtle, minimalist electronics. The pianist, Austrian Karin Schistek performs with great focus and precision, letting the piano's resonating sonorities blossom organically to emphasiza a sense of silent meditation and serenity. The sense of time, or pulse, is forsaken for reserved, spatial, almost uniform, playing.
The piano and computer parts were created by Edwards and specially-designed algorithmic composition software, with details featured on his website. The composition is conceived in four voices. One is for for each of the pianist's hands, and the other two for the high and low voices of an analogue synthesis emulation, played back from the computer and mixed with various sound files (some algorithmic, some ambient) in four channels.
Edwards, who also recorded, mixed and mastered this unique sonic journey, has succeeded in structuring a deep, meditative 40-minute piece that is alive with warm colors and arresting, subtle dynamics.