- THE CEILING FLOATS AWAY
THE CEILING FLOATS AWAY
Ravello Records proudly presents THE CEILING FLOATS AWAY, a groundbreaking new collaboration between sound artist Matthew Burtner, former US poet laureate Rita Dove, and ecoacoustic ensemble EcoSono. A National Endowment for the Arts commission, The Ceiling Floats Away was awarded a Special Jury Award in the 2016 American Prize in Chamber Music Composition for “Unique Nexus of Acoustics, Electronics and Audience Interaction.” Since its composition, it has been selected for performance at various festivals and venues, including the Smithsonian Natural History Museum’s Accelerate Festival.
The Ceiling Floats Away bridges the gap between different spaces: spoken word and song, performance and technology, audience and artist. The chamber ensemble work consists of recitation of Rita Dove’s poetry by the poet herself—sometimes simultaneously with the singer. The performance is enhanced by Nomads, software that enables audience participation through mobile devices. Thirteen pre-composed movements alternate with Audience Creation Bridges, during which the audience uses Nomads to contribute thoughts and reflections on the work by manipulating the music in real time. In this sense, the audience members become active artists alongside composer, poet, and performers. As Burtner writes, “the piece empowers people as creative agents in an artwork without walls, without ceiling.”