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date: 22 November 2019


  • Hugh Davies


A portable synthesizer system designed for groups of children from the age of about five. Conceived by the composer Christian Clozier, it was developed from 1972 by Jean-Claude Le Duc, in collaboration with Pierre Boeswillwald, at the premises of the Groupe de Musique Expérimentale de Bourges (the name consists of the initials GMEB and a phonetic spelling of aux gosses, Fr.: ‘for kids’); it was first used in 1973 and later versions were constructed in 1978 and planned in 1983. About ten of the systems were in existence in the early 1980s: some were in use by members of the GMEB, who held workshops in many parts of France, and others were installed in French further education centres. The system consisted of three independent operating consoles, each with a built-in microphone and variable-speed cassette tape recorder; these were normally linked to one control console, through which voltage-controlled interconnections could be made between them. The same team also developed an elaborate multi-loudspeaker system, the Gmebaphone (...

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