A pianist emerges from the darkness, approaches an open piano, rummages in the tail, rubs drumsticks on the strings and draws some sounds. Electroacoustic equipment multiplies, modifies and diffuses those sounds, replicating them endlessly, aspiring to hypnosis. The pianist retreats into the dark as bands of harmonics continue to spread. The piano is left alone with its mouth wide open, with its dangling cables and hanging microphones, like a useless object.
Virtuous machine # 1 has set in motion. The instruments change but it will be like this throughout the concert. Luigi Ceccarelli’s Macchine Virtuose are sophisticated and refined manipulations of live sound, toys of great complexity and infinite response possibilities. And there is also the play of light, well done, well calibrated, and also often moved by the sound and therefore linked to the sound event.
The fact is that it’s a fun and intriguing show…. Seeing and hearing playing so well is a very rare pleasure.
There is not only the game, of course, there are musically deeper intentions; we could say that it is a synthesis of decades of experiences on electronic music, including extra-cultured ones and on alternative theater. But the playful aspect is the prevailing one and we focus on this, because it is the most normally overlooked aspect of making music. A very large audience, interested and perfectly involved.
(Michelangelo Zurletti – La Repubblica 28/10/94)
For Luigi Ceccarelli’s “Macchine Virtuose” … the sold out testified to the composer’s solid reputation, but also the seal of an engaging evening in which live music, music on magnetic tape, performances by the performers-actors and a skilful direction of lights and multivision have given birth to a new concept of performing in a rigorous but not punitive form. Ceccarelli’s Machines are not physical entities, but environmental situations that make space, time, rhythmic pulsations and the audience’s breath merge in a magical moment with music … ..
A crescendo, it should be said, of virtuosity, played with great wisdom also by all the performers, the Ars Ludi group … A blockbuster, played and you want on the keys of entertainment, but that makes you doubt that contemporary music you begin to like.
(Marco Spada – L’Unità 28/10/94)
A soul of metal and an urban touch of jazz
The sound events, the instrumentalists, the spectators, the environment. They are the “Virtuous Machines” on stage at the Roman Aquarium. Concert -Show by Luigi Ceccarelli for “Progetto Musica 94”.
Soul of Metal, says the title of the song that closes the concert dedicated to music by Luigi Ceccarelli at the Roman Aquarium. Because everything is artificial in this prodigious inventor of sounds. Everything is urban, metropolitan, technological, but also a jazz soul. Extraordinary, memorable concert. With four times the average audience of contemporary music. Different, not starched … .. And Ceccarelli found the right opportunity to reveal himself what he certainly is: one of the most important composers in business today.
Show more than concert …. In the first piece, “Aura in Visibile”, at the beginning the amplified sound of piano strings operated by objects is heard … Then a curtain of industrial-futurist-spatial type sounds, but they are loudspeakers vibrators that transmit impulses to the piano strings.
Arrhythmic and ultrarhythmic “Aleph con Zero”, for two percussionists and two pianists. Syntax of anxiety and intoxication. At a certain point the two marimbas acquire their own life, their own motion, and advance towards the center of the stage. Virtuous and miraculous machines. In “Discussion of 3000” the two percussionists enter the scene while a beautiful illuminated white circle falls from above and forms the very Mondrian-like setting of the performance. Which is a combination with synthetic voices that introduce a Dadaist play of syllables and coughs. The piece ends with a sassy and infernal music box. Without interruption “Anima di Metallo” begins: deaf resonances of gamelan orchestra, Balinese culture, jazz culture, changing lights and fluorescent metal tongues dancing on the white backdrop. Cult objects of the pop-technological era, disco effect, with a paroxysmal, authentically tribal ending.
(Mario Gamba – Il Manifesto 30/10/94)