By Yuri Tuma
The Subtropics Festival XXII which started on March 1st is breaking new barriers in sound technology with its concert series of experimental music and sound art.
Until last weekend when I showed up at the 420 building on Lincoln Rd in South Beach I had no idea that there is a new way to assemble a symphony. I learned from Miami’s own FIU Laptop & Electronic Ensemble (FLEA) that there is. In this presentation classical instruments were utilized via computer programming and live performances to generate the works from American experimental composer Alvin Lucier, directed by Jacob Sudol.
The Subtropics Festival also showcased at the Miami Beach Botanical Garden the sound works by “FM” an experimental collaboration formed by David Dunn, Rene Barge and Gustavo Matamoros. This time around the performance became more of an installation piece. Speakers and amplifiers were spread throughout the garden playing futuristic and environmental sounds at a high volume. Noises like footsteps and voices were muted, allowing the spectator to enter a new world in which our ears become our vision, and with my eyes closed I was taken to a place never before contemplated by my imagination. It becomes more than just listening, it becomes experiencing.
If you are like me and do not know much about sound art, this is your chance to learn. The Subtropics Festival runs through March 17th and you can find more info on upcoming presentations at subtropics.org.