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Viñao, Alejandro (Raul)locked

  • Stephen Montague

(b Buenos Aires, Sept 4, 1951). Argentine composer. He studied the guitar and conducting in Buenos Aires before moving to London in 1975 to continue his studies at the RCM; in 1988 he took the PhD in composition at City University, London, and thereafter worked in London as a freelance composer. Most of his works make use of electronics, and his skilful integration of acoustic instruments with computer or tape has frequently resulted in prizes at international electro-acoustic music competitions, including those at Bourges and Linz. In 1994 he was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship. The influence of his Latin American background permeates his music especially rhythmically; for example, he sees his melodic writing as developing through rhythmic rather than harmonic structures. His harmonic vocabulary is often consonant without necessarily being tonal, though in a work such as Son entero much of the attraction is its play on functional harmony. His expressed purpose in using technology is to create an illusion of acoustic instruments transforming into something new; something outside the physical world’s experience. He is interested, also, in exploring the ‘ambiguous area where harmony and timbre can no longer be distinguished as separate musical functions’.

Works

Una orquesta imaginaria, 4 channel tape, 1979

Go, 8 channel tape, 1981

Hendrix Haze, 4 channel tape, 1983

Triple Con., fl, vc, pf, cptr/tape, 1984

Son entero, S, A, T, B, cptr/tape, 1985–8

Toccata del Mago, 4 vn, 2 va, vc, db, cptr/tape, 1986–7

Algebra on Fire, chbr ens (19 players), cptr, 1988–91

Tumblers, vn, mar, cptr/tape, 1989

Chant d’ailleurs, S, cptr/tape, 1991

Borges y el espejo, S, cptr/tape, 1992

Mar Conc., mar, chbr orch, 1993

Hildegard’s Dream, S, cptr/tape, 1994

Phrase & Fiction, str qt, cptr/tape, 1994–5

Rashomon: the Opera (chbr op, C. Raine), 5 singers, cptr, 1995–7

Masago’s Confession, S, cptr, 1996

Apocryphal Dances, orch, cptr, 1996–7

Materials in GB-Lmic; F-Pd; Sonic Arts Network (UK)

Principal recording companies: Musidisc (Paris), Radio Oberösterreich, Wergo

London, British Music Information Centre
Paris, Centre de Documentation de la Musique Contemporaire