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A Welcome from the Editor

Sound and image. Light and timbre. Eye and ear. In some ways, the conjuction of soundscape and landscape informs all multimedia endeavors. The need to examine synesthetic works that capture the hermenutical and visceral potentials of media art lies at the heart of our motivation in publishing Resonance. In this issue, our contributors explore some of the fertile opportunities for inquiry posed by animation, abstract film and programmatic music.

Christine Lee Gengaro, a recent Ph.D. graduate from the Department of Music History and Literature at the University of Southern California, explores the visual and sonic worlds of Oskar Fischinger and Mary Ellen Bute, two titans in early avant-garde and abstract animation. Gengaro combines a fascinating overview of the comparative commercial and artistic success of Fischinger and Bute with select analyses of their little-seen animated films. Film excerpts, audio clips and video stills enhance Gengaro’s article and bring her discussion of these early multimedia art works to life.

René Clair’s Entr’acte is considered a monument—or more aptly an anti-monument—to Dadaist aesthetics. Our second article, by Samuel N. Dorf (Ph.D. student in Musicology at Northwestern University), takes an evocative look at the score for Clair’s film and examines how Satie reinvented Dadaist principles and practices in his music. If in the spirit of Dada readers find themselves fascinated by “all things fast, mechanical and modern,” they will be gratified by Dorf’s article, enriched by clips and images from Entr’acte.

Our Digital Composer Archive features a conversation between acclaimed composer Thomas Osborne (D.M.A. student at the University of Southern California) and Andrea Moore, new music advocate and master’s student in musicology (University of Southern California). This engaging interview touches on Osborne’s musical influences, his experiences as a West Coast composer and the state of new music in Los Angeles. Beyond the multimedia format of the DCA, Osborne’s music is particularly absorbed with the relationship between sound and image as Osborne himself says, “When I write music I have to have some kind of an image.” Explore the DCA by clicking on various images to view score excerpts and to hear interview clips and examples of Osborne’s music. We have also provided a transcript of the interview in its entirety.

Enjoy the issue and—like Fischinger, Bute, Satie and Osborne—allow the possibilities of multimedia expression to capture your imagination.

Catherine Anne Cooper

Executive Editor, Resonance: an interdisciplinary music journal