Teenage Lontano and roygbiv&b, from 2008 and 2011 respectively, comprise two key works by composer and artist Marina Rosenfeld. Both works are choral compositions imagined for and enacted by teenagers.
Premiered in New York’s immense Park Avenue Armory, Teenage Lontano is Rosenfeld’s groundbreaking “cover version” of Hungarian composer György Ligeti’s 1960s classic for orchestra. Teenage Lontano is reimagined as an immersive sound environment bisected by a column of teenagers in headphones. Beneath a loudspeaker rotating at the phonographic speed of 33 1/3 rpm, the teens’ collective voices produce a hauntingly vulnerable account of Ligeti’s dissonant polychords. Teenage Lontano has been performed on three continents, including a French premiere in 2020 as part of Musica Strasbourg.
In roygbiv&b, asynchronous, sometimes raucous incantations of song fragments swell and dissipate, loosely organized around a purposeful mis-hearing of the acronym ROYGBIV: in Rosenfeld’s version, “r” evokes ‘are’ (as in, “Are you that somebody…”);, o is ‘oh’ (“Oh, oh, oh…”); y becomes ‘why’ (“Why should my heart…); g is ‘je (sus)’, and so on. The extra ‘b’ in the work’s title pays homage to the ‘blue(s)’ of r&b.
Rosenfeld’s punning, spectral composition had its debut performance at the Museum of Modern Art in 2011. The recording featured on this edition took place at the South London Gallery in 2014 realised by local south Londoners, the recording highlighting their style and genre affiliations. Both works have remained unpublished until now.
Teenage Lontano, 2008
Recorded on March 8, 2008 at the Park Avenue Armory by Arup Acoustics for the 2008 Whitney Biennial. Special thanks to Art Production Fund, Bob Bielecki, Raj Patel and all of the NYC performers
roygbiv&b (Version for South London), 2014
Recorded on June 11, 2014 at South London Gallery, London by Mick Ritchie. Special thanks to Simon Parris, Avid Williams and the talented vocal stylists of Peckham and Brooklyn
Mastered by Lawrence English at Negative Space