Crazy Little [Theremin] Waltz

Posted: 10/12/2014 11:48:52 PM

From: Canada

Joined: 8/1/2008

Rick Rote: ".....It has some intervallic complexity that must have been challenging. What is your approach to playing disjunct and complex harmonic music on the theremin? 


The trick of playing ANYTHING on a theremin lies in the ability of the thereminist to SING the entire piece correctly, "a cappella", from beginning to end. Years ago I heard some of the "Minus One" practice tapes that Nadia Reisenberg made for Clara Rockmore. There was no theremin on them, but you could clearly hear Clara singing away in the background to Nadia's accompaniment. 


You need to know your theremin part like the back o' yer hand! You should be able to hear your entire piece, complete with accompaniment, from beginning to end, in your musical imagination. If you can't, you are not ready to perform it.


2. You get really great sound on your videos. Can you share a bit on how you record them. What kind of levels you are looking for with the theremin. What kind of production processing you do after recording?


I never record to the built-in microphone on my camcorder. When I make a video, I set up a mike and record the theremin part directly to my trusty old (and now obsolete) ROLAND VS-2400CD. When I am finished, I have both a recorded version of the music on the Roland, as well as the video soundtrack that was captured by the camera during the session. All I have to do is mix my Roland recording, make an mp3 of it, sync it with the camera soundtrack manually, and then "mute" the clip.


Like I said, the VS-2400 is obsolete, and frankly I'd love to get rid of it, but I know the device so well I don't dare replace it. Whatever recording device you use, you need to know it the way a chef knows his/her oven! If you don't your soufflé is going to collapse! 

Posted: 10/13/2014 12:17:09 AM

From: Northern NJ, USA

Joined: 7/29/2014

Coalport wrote: The trick of playing ANYTHING on a theremin lies in the ability of the thereminist to SING the entire piece correctly

This makes perfect sense! No Arnold Schoenberg coming from me anytime soon.



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