CLIFF CREGO | Wind-in-Snow, the South Wallowas

Wind-in-Snow, the South Wallowas . . .
On the road in the Northwest of America. [ click photo for next . . . ]


‘You translate everything, whether physical,
mental or spiritual, into muscular tension’.
F. M. Alexander

We shape the world and the world shapes us.

Living, natural sound, whether that of the voice, or
string, or wind instrument, always begins without vibrato,
just as good intonation always begins with perfect unison,
octave & 5th. All else is inflection, is expression.

To make a habit of constant vibrato, whether fast or
slow, narrow or wide, diminishes expression, as well
as the life and beauty of the sound. It's like trading
real wilderness for the supersaturated hybrids of
suburbia:—It shouts weakness and decadence.


"Form emerges out of movement;
it is the outward envelope of
the rhythmic pulse of change."

Movement, in my view, is what is primary in musical
performance. My sense of sound in New Art Music is
deeply conditioned by my experience of the natural world.
I very much try to avoid complication of any kind,
and vibrato, especially if it's a constant feature of the
tone production adds, an arbitrary rhythmic pulse
or movement which generally works against the more subtle
higher level movements of a phrase. Also, as part of a
collective, vibrato distorts how the sounds blend,
and, the more complex the composite sound,
the more the vibrato distorts.

Just as a piece that is hyper-dense, with lots of
notes, played loudly, with sharp attack, does not mean
that it moves at all--this will be determined not by lower
but, again, by higher level differences--the sound with vibrato
does not necessarily mean it is more voice-like, or more
expressive, or more musical. That will be determined
much more by the primary vocal quality of what I
think of as an inner sostenuto, or the sustaining breath-energy of
a phrase which has a kind if inner necessity, or logic, about
it. The sounds move, or follow, one another in a way
that for the ear cannot be otherwise. This is the primary vision that
the conductor or leader of a group—as guide—must bring to
first the rehearsal, and then to performance.
ALWAYS: Vision is everything; it's the why of the music,
why you're playing Bach and Berio,
instead of Liszt and Tschaikovsky,
as well as how and where and when
you play them.


Featured gallery, mountain water . . . .
lease visit my MOUNTAIN WATER Gallery—some of the best
of my flowform photography w/ a selection of the highest quality
prints & frames . . . [ mouse over for controls / lower right fro full-screen ]

All Photographs & texts by Cliff Crego © 2011
(created: IV.27.2008)