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date: 20 September 2019

Barron, Bebe [née Charlotte Wind]locked

  • Barry Schrader

Extract

[née Charlotte Wind]

(b Minneapolis, June 16, 1927; d Los Angeles, April 20, 2008). American composer. She and her husband Louis Barron were pioneers in the field of electro-acoustic music. She received the MA in political science from the University of Minnesota, where she studied composition with Cordero, and she also spent a year studying composition at the University of Mexico. In 1947 she moved to New York and, while working as a researcher for Time-Life, studied composition with Riegger and Cowell. Married that year, the Barrons began their experiments with taped electronic sounds; in 1948 in New York they established one of the earliest electro-acoustic music studios. It contained both disc and tape equipment with sine- and square-wave oscillators, mixers and filters, and four synchronous projectors used for the manipulation of sound on optical tracks. Their experiments led the Barrons to use and develop characteristics of individual circuits to create different types of sound events, each of which was considered a Gestalt, and they eventually constructed a large collection of cybernetic circuits for compositional use. When they collaborated on a composition, Louis designed and built the electronic circuits for sound generation while Bebe searched the taped material for its musical potential and proposed the application of particular processing and compositional techniques....

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The New Grove Dictionary of Women Composers