Strange, Allen

Velocity Studies IV: Flutter

b. June 26, 1943 - Calexico, California, USA 

d. February 20, 2008 - Bainbridge, Washington, USA

American composer and performer. He studied composition with Michalsky at State University, Fullerton (BA, MA 1967) and later with Erickson, Partch, Gaburo and Oliveros (composition and electronic media) at the University of California, San Diego (1967--8, 1970--71).

Strange composed for live electronic instrumental ensembles, for live and taped electronics with voices and acoustic instruments, and for the theatre; most of his works for acoustic instruments require extended performance techniques He is particularly interested in linear tuning systems (as in The Hairbreath Ring Screamers, 1969, and Second Book of Angels, 1979), spatial distribution of sound (Heart of Gold, 1982, and Velocity Studies, 1983), the isolation of timbre as a musical parameter, and composing for groups of like instruments or voices. Elements of vaudeville, rock-and-roll, country-and-western music, and the guitar techniques of Les Paul are found in his works. His theatre pieces employ various media including film, slides, and lighting effects; he produced a series of such works in collaboration with the playwright and director Robert Jenkins, of which the most important are Jack and the Beanstalk (1979) and The Ghost Hour (1981), an audio drama. In the mid-1980s, Strange became interested in alternate tuning systems. Strange lives on Bainbridge Island, Wa. pursuing a full-time career composing and concertizing with his wife.

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