- Year of composition: 1989
- Arrangement: Arr. Wende Bartley, 1992-93
- Duration: 14:31
- Instrumentation: female singer and stereo fixed medium
- 44,1 kHz, 16 bits
Ellipsis is a work for female singer and tape which seeks to embody a ritual celebration of spiritual power, rooted in the ancient traditions of lunar mythology. One of the most important symbols in this tradition is the meaning given to the unfolding of the lunar cycle, with its three stages of waxing, full and waning moon. Traditionally these stages have been associated with three images of woman: virgin, mother, and crone. Ellipsis continues in the ancient tradition of associating stages of growth with the three lunar phases and creates another three-fold story of woman, chronicling the spiritual and psychological empowerment of woman’s collective consciousness as it has evolved through time: The Age of Darkness, Creating a New Space, and The Age of Resonance.
The vocal part has no text but is composed out of an approach to the voice that attempts to express the desired emotive and dramatic quality through a wide range of sounds, accessed by the singer by creating a link between the voice and the body. The breath establishes that link, and by grounding the breath in the body the singer can create a wide palette of sounds.
The tape part of Ellipsis is constructed from a variety of sources: sampled acoustic string sounds, FM synthesis, and multitrack layerings of the voice of Fides Krucker. String and synthesized sound material were completed in 1989 at Gerr ElectroAcoustics in Toronto, and the Electronic Music Studio at McGill University in Montréal using the Synclavier II synthesizer. The multitrack voice section was composed and produced in 1993 at the Luscar Recording Studio of The Banff Centre for the Arts, with engineer Frank Lockwood. Final mix of the tape was completed at The Banff Centre for the Arts, with engineer Jennifer Lewis. Ellipsis was originally written in 1989 for electric string quartet, voice, tape and dance and was completed with the assistance of an Explorations grant from the Canada Council [for the Arts] (CCA); it premiered on November 10, 1989 during the CEC Electroacoustic Days, >convergence< at The Banff Centre for the Arts (Alberta, Canada). The present revised version involved a reworking of the piece in 1992-93 in collaboration with the mezzo-soprano Fides Krucker; it premiered on January 30, 1993 at the Music Gallery’s Living in a Virtual World festival in Toronto by Fides Krucker.
- January 30, 1993, Fides Krucker, voice • Living in a Virtual World , The Music Gallery, Toronto (Ontario, Canada)