Two weeks later, on April 17th, he surprised us by offering his just-finished Amazing Maze for performance at the Nemo '96 NetEvent. This is the second major world premiere entrusted to the Nemo '96 Festival via cyberspace. During his extensive e-mail exchange with the Nemo staffer and composer R. Albert Falesch, he suggested that the work should be performed live, on stage, "as a musician playing an instrument".
Inspired, Falesch then queried Essl about the possibility of including a live instrumentalist in the premiere. Essl's approval was offered under the condition that a formal set of constraints must be observed. This involved choosing an instrument already presented in his samples, and using the technique and gestures, or variants thereof, which are already present in the work as provided in electronic form. A further e-mail exchange with Falesch yielded more specific notions about a formal outline of the work. In Essl's own words, that formal structure is defined poetically:
Essl has gained several commissions, including on in 1991 from IRCAM (Institute de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique) for Entsagung (Renunciation), for flute, bass clarinet, prepared piano, percussion, and live electronics.
His music is scheduled for performance in both hemispheres, and in 1997 the Salzburg Festival is dedicating to him a series in the Mozarteum, called "Portrait Concert: Karlheinz Essl". This will be performed by ensemble Klangforum Wien, digital samples of whom are to be heard in today's performance, and which are considered an integral part of the composition.
Updated: 28 Aug 2011