Dr. Vera Ivanova, Composer
Vera Ivanova,
composer

'...internationally recognized as an emerging artist of great talent.'

Campus Times (University of Rochester/Eastman)

Soma

for fixed media (2001)

Premiered at the Moscow Culture Center “DOM,” Moscow International Festival of electro-acoustic music and multimedia “Altermedium 2.0: well-tempered noise” (Moscow, Russia)

Program Notes:
The title of the piece is taken from ancient Indian mythology where soma is a sacred
intoxicating drink used in Vedic ritual, as well as the divinity of this drink and later on of
the Moon. In addition, this is a morphological root of the word somatic, etc. The main feature of the piece is the use of recognisable sounds and their transformation.
These sounds consist of instrumental sounds (bowed cymbal, bass drum, orchestra string
glissando, piano repetitions, bowed vibraphone and wind chimes), sounds of environment
(aeroplane, noise, crowd, scream) and few spoken words (‘this is me’).
In the process of development of the piece these sounds are repeated in certain context
and transformed (using computer programs Sound Hack and plug-ins/filters of Logic
Audio Gold). With instrumental sounds my aim was to use the computer software as a
sort of ‘extended techniques’ to achieve an effect of gradual unfolding and transformation
of still recognisable sound. The noise of a crowd is treated as musical texture as the
words are ‘smashed’ to emphasise certain phonemes and vowels in continuous moving
sound mass.
The main idea of the composition was to make a journey from initial recognisable sounds
through their transformations to different levels of external and internal worlds and their
co-existence.

Instrumentation
CD playback
Duration
15 minutes, 16 seconds
Premiere
May 17, 2002
Audio Sample
Soma-fragment
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Performances:

March 1st, 2008
Soma, for fixed media (2001)
Cal State Fullerton (Fullerton, CA)
International Women's Electroacoustic Listening Room Project
March 31st, 2006
Soma, for fixed media (2001)
Neighborhood Unitarian Church (Pasadena, CA)
Los Angeles Sonic Odyssey (LASO-2006)
May 17th, 2002
Soma, for fixed media (2001)
Moscow Culture Center 'DOM' (Moscow, Russia)
Moscow International Festival of electro-acoustic music and multimedia Altermedium 2.0: well-tempered noise