Eri, After Dark

Sound: Benoit Granier
Ribbon, magnet, wooden box, ink on paper (doubling as a speaker membrane), motors, star LEDs, sound module, aluminum and microprocessor.

Inspired by and made for Benoit Granier’s musical composition Eri1, this piece was originally constructed to be easily transported to China, where it first ‘performed’ as part of a live, electro-acoustic concert at the Beijing Conservatory in February 2012.

Brought on stage, like a present tied with a bow, Eri, After Dark is then unwrapped: The top, a Chinese-style ink painting is placed standing off to one side; while a magnet from a matching jewel case triggers a hidden reed switch, which activates the piece. (A time lag also allows the ‘stagehand ‘to sit down and put on a pair of sunglasses, foreshadowing the next sequence of events.) The flaps of the box then open one after another so that, after the first one opens, the sound module is triggered. Once all the flaps are opened, the box’s content is revealed as an intense, Pandora like light (created by a cluster of LEDs mounted inside). The piece then continues to transmit Granier’s composition through the ink painting/speaker until the next-to-the-last flap closes. Afterwards, the final flap closes as well; and, the piece is carried off stage.

1Eri an interlude from Granier’s opera Eri, After Dark is based on Haruki Murakami novel of the same title. The opera follows the life of Murakami’s fictional sisters Mari and Eri in Tokyo, where Eri is lost between two worlds - the real one she is trying to escape and the fantasy one, where she is imprisoned within a television, waiting for her sister to retrieve her.

NOTE: Untied and with the speaker/ink painting standing to one side, the piece also can be presented as a freestanding sculpture, re-programmed to be activated by a sensor to open/close at pre-set times.

Acknowledgements: George Bossart & Kathy Patterson for technical/programming assistance.

Alternate video available (here).


© Copyright 2015 Mary Sherman - All rights reserved.