New Spaces

Studio, street, factory

Authored by: Jonathan Impett

Routledge Handbook to Luigi Nono and Musical Thought

Print publication date:  October  2018
Online publication date:  October  2018

Print ISBN: 9781409455974
eBook ISBN: 9780429485732
Adobe ISBN:


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Canti di vita e d’amore: Sul ponte di Hiroshima (1962) is a response to the cold war, with texts by Anders, Pacheco and Pavese. Sound-shapes built of interval fields are now fundamental to his technique. Canciones a Guiomar, setting poems by Machado, uses constellations of percussive and plucked sounds from which pitch emerges. These are Nono’s last conventionally notated works for a decade. Having attended Darmstadt through the 1950s, Nono now teaches at Dartington in the early 1960s. He works with poet Giuliano Scabia on an ongoing collaborative music-theatre project Un diario italiano, reflecting contemporary industrial conditions. Nono’s concept of azione scenic evolves. La fabbrica illuminata (1964) emerges from this project. For soprano and tape, it uses sounds and texts collected at the Italsider steelworks in Genoa. He begins to give talks and presentations at workers’ associations throughout Italy. In the studio, Nono also makes music for Peter Weiss’s Die Ermittlung (1965), documentary drama based on the Nazi trials in Frankfurt. Material from this becomes the tape work Ricorda cosa ti hanno fatto in Auschwitz. In 1966 he works with The Living Theatre group in Milan. Their improvisations become material for A floresta é jovem e cheja de vida (singers, actors, clarinet, percussion and tape), using texts of contemporary freedom fighters and ideas from Kahn’s ‘ladder of escalation’.

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