all music, text, and images ©2019 Graeme Shields unless otherwise noted

July 7, 2017

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Pareidolia

Pareidolia, Greek for "beyond the image", is the human ability to identify familiar patterns in response to a stimulus where none exist. The result is often recognized as seeing faces or shapes in clouds, textured surfaces, carpets, or other mediums. This piece offers an aural medium for the mind to exercise this ability.

 

Divided into three sections, the pitch content, note duration, frequency of notes, and textural density are all determined by multiple types of dice. The end of each section was determined when every face of every die had been shown. To serve as a vehicle of development within the compositional process, every section is born out of slightly different parameters imposed on the dice, each allowing for more intuitive decisions from the composer than the last.

 

The purpose of the piece is to provide the listener with a medium in which to find patterns. Even a casual listener will hear moments of tonal clarity, but a more attentive listener may hear shifts in pseudo tonal centers, rhythmic motives, cadential arrivals, and other patterns that seem to emerge. Each listener, armed with different tastes and preferences, should hear different musical patterns.

 

 

 

 

 

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