Get Involved: VCAMbient
The Hurford Center and VCAM announce VCAMbient, a weekly curated series in which ambient music–played live or via recordings by members of the Bi-Co community–will play at low volume during the course of one afternoon each week.
In 1978, musician and composer Brian Eno released Ambient 1: Music for Airports. Eno conceived the term “ambient music” to refer to compositions that add tint to, rather than overpower, a sonic environment. Since then, ambient as an approach has been applied to a variety of music: techno, New Age, even pedal steel guitar instrumentals.
In his foundational essay on the genre, Eno writes: “whereas [the intention of muzak and ‘background music’] is to `brighten’ the environment by adding stimulus to it (thus supposedly alleviating the tedium of routine tasks and level-ing out the natural ups and downs of the body rhythms) Ambient Music is intended to induce calm and a space to think.”
How it Works
In keeping with these principles, these VCAMbient sessions are not performances. Business in the building–classes, administrative work, studying, socializing–is meant to go on as planned, uninterrupted, unhampered. The point is not for listeners to isolate the music from the rest of the sounds in the building, but to hear them as an integral whole, or not. Eno again: “Ambient Music must be able to accommodate many levels of listening attention without enforcing one in particular; it must be as ignorable as it is interesting.”
This is a call for submissions for VCAMbient. You can propose to play someone else’s music, or (even better) your own. You can play live or play a recording–as long as the volume level is kept low.
Contact Gus Stadler gstadler [at] haverford.edu with your proposal for a VCAMbient session.