In 1913, Italian painter and composer Luigi Russolo, a member of the Futurist movement, penned “The Art of Noise,” a manifesto declaring that with the proliferation of machinery in the early 20th century, music had to adjust to compensate for the increased noise of daily life. “We get infinitely more pleasure imagining combinations of the sounds of trolleys, autos and other vehicles, and loud crowds,” Russolo wrote, “than listening once more, for instance, to the heroic or pastoral symphonies.”
Peter Price, co-director of the experimental music and dance collective , says that over the past 100 years the ideas in “The Art of Noise” have gone from seeming radical to being absorbed into every form of music, from the avant garde to radio hits.
“It was the first time the idea was presented that music could be made from any sound whatsoever, not just the sounds of traditional musical instruments but the sounds of machines or the sounds of nature,” Price says. “In 1913 that was a pretty crazy idea, but now it’s become something that we live with every day, even within the most popular forms of music.”
Tonight, will kick off a year-long celebration of the 100th anniversary of “The Art of Noise” with a Futurist Cocktail Party featuring musical performances, a reading of the manifesto by performance artist Mauri Walton, and guest speakers discussing Russolo’s legacy. The event will also serve as an open brainstorming session to conceive events for the year to come.
Performers include Joo Won Park, who will create music from computer-processed household items and children’s toys; Adam Harper, author of “Infinite Music: Imagining the Next Millennium of Human Music-Making;” and dancer/mixologist David Konyk, who will be serving up the Futurist cocktails.
“The Futurists believed that Futurism as a concept should evade every aspect of living,” Price says. “Not just the art that you make but the food that you cook and the cocktails that you drink. So they made recipes, generally focusing on strange and outrageous combinations of taste.”
If you go
Futurist Cocktail Party
March 11, 7 p.m.
1714 N. Mascher St.
Get into the Futurist spirit with this inventive cocktail from “The Futurist Cookbook.”
Fire In The Mouth
At the bottom of a glass: whiskey with liqueur cherries, previously rolled in cayenne pepper.
Next layer: milk and honey or honey forming an impermeable division.
On top of the honey: alkermes, vermouth and Strega.