Ernst Toch was an influential and prolific Austrian composer of the 20th century. Fleeing Hitler he eventually settled in Los Angeles. The Geographical Fugue is. ABSTRACT: Ernst Toch’s “Geographical Fugue” was conceived of as a work for technological media, designed as a recording to be ‘performed’. Trin – i – dad and the big. Mis – sis – sip – pi and the. GEOGRAPHICAL FUGUE. Ernst Toch ORFEON UNIVERSITARIO. DE MALAGA.

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My Life and Work. The place names are largely the same in German and English except for Ratibor Trinidad and Athen in place of Tibet which is pronounced with the stress on the second syllable in German.

Capitalization indicates that the syllable is name-initial.

Fuge aus der Geographie (Toch, Ernst)

Flight out of Time: The text English translation of all the parts consists of various permutations of the following lines:.

The paths of the arrows in Example 5 in essence trace ggeographical the first two formants, or spectral peaks, of vowel sound production.

I then continue by exploring the impact of postwar technology on constructions of the body in Weimar Republic visual and audio art, particularly in the ggeographical relationship between organic parts and mechanical prostheses. When Toch arrived in the United States inas a refugee from Nazi Germany, Cage sought him out and obtained permission for the Fugue to be published in English translation.

As Toch wrote in his original program notes: If we examine the geographical locations alone mentioned in the fugue without taking subsequent repetitions into accountas shown in Example 1, we can see that Toch chooses names that share a number of phonetic properties: Premiered in at a Berlin-based festival dedicated to the incorporation of technology in music, a few years later the piece was transformed into a humorous showpiece spoken live by a-cappella choirs.


View a slapstick version. As a cultural document, the fugue offers a wealth of information about Weimar Germany, revealing affinities with political and artistic trends as well as the state of phonetic research. Jonathan Sterne has further emphasized the integral relationship between early sound reproduction technologies and the physical form, mechanical function, and scientific understanding of the human ear.

The suite was designed to be recorded by a chorus on gramophone records at 78 rpmthen “performed” in concert by replaying the records at a much higher speed.

ZGMTH – From Trinidad to Cyberspace: Reconsidering Ernst Toch’s “Geographical Fugue”

Toch geograpnical as an infantry lieutenant in the Austrian army in World War I, and later returned to an academic appointment in Mannheim. In almost all the geographic names, the vowel sound goes from open to closed, in which case intelligibility is well-preserved.

Listen to Schwitters recite the Ursonate [external link on ubuweb]. Jenkin, Fleeming, and James A. Example 3 maps them onto the Vokaldreieckor vowel triangle, a schematic diagram of the position of the tongue during pronunciation.

Retrieved from ” https: Existing as an almost absurd parody of a geography lesson, these chanted words become a collection of different syllables with almost universal phonetic characteristics rather than culturally specific meaning. University of Chicago Press. The association between abnormal bodies and overly high voices was famously emphasized in the movie The Wizard of Ozin which the actors delivered their lines at a slower tempo, while the final product reflected post-audio manipulation of playback speed and pitch.


Make sure to watch it till the end! The tocg, in front of an audience that included experimental composer John Cagewas a sensational success.

Geographical Fugue – Wikipedia

I chose to [explore] the spoken word, and let a four-part mixed chamber choir speak specifically determined rhythms, vowels, consonants, syllables and words, which by involving the mechanical possibilities of the recording increasing the tempo, and the resulting pitch height created a type of instrumental music, which leads the listener to forget that it originated from speaking. In the s, the prominent German composer Pfitzner campaigned against Jazz, claiming it was anti-German, pacifist and internationalist Cook Having conducted extensive experiments with speeding up speech and vowel recordings, physiologist Ludimar Hermann coined the term formant to describe the resonance frequencies inferred from the amplitude envelope of the partials in There are an additional three diphthongs: Visions of the New Human in Weimar Berlin.

The text is quite long and varied, and vowels feature prominently: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. The German text is as follows. The lightest jobs were again classified to discover how many of them required the use of full faculties, and we found that could be filled by legless men, 2, by one-legged men, 2 by armless men, by one-armed men, and 10 by blind men.

In the early s, Ernst Toch — was one of the most often performed living composers in Germany. Edited by John Elderfield, translated by Ann Raimes.