Apophenia is both the human tendency to perceive meaningful patterns within random data and the pathologic obsession it may generate. Sketched during a music-theatre workshop with Georges Aperghis, its final version, produced by IRCAM, has been presented at the festival Musica in Strasbourg.
The theme of Apophenia is a based on a "minor" conspiracy theory obsessed with the similarities between Lincoln's and Kennedy's lives and assassinations. Some coincidences are real, some are fictive, some come from misinterpretations or errors, but it is impossible (as for any conspiracy theory) to trace a neat line between reality and fiction.
The piece develops like a radio-drama and the manipulation of a technological interface, half-way between a quiz game button and a tape-deck remote control, is the element though which the dramaturgy adavnces. Apophenia is a story of machinations, solitude and loss of oneself.
The table is both a technological interface to playback less and less understandable snippets of audio recordings of spoken text, articulating the similarities at the bases of the conspiracy, and a source of sonic and gestural materials.
The score organises written materials, without providing a temporal grid to keep them together. This has to be reconstructed every time, by listening, anticipating and reacting, as precisely as possible, to the obscure trace offered by the tape.
TNS, festvial Musica Strasbourg 2015
Sébastien Clément actor/percussions
Valentin de Nicola double bass
Benjamin Mayer bass clarinet
le 104, Paris 2014
Percussions - Acting: Richard Dubelsky
Bass clarinet: Mathieu Steffanus
Contrabass: Nicolas Crosse