The mechanization of music

Druckereihalle im Ackermannshof

Konzertabend des CONTAINER Ensemble

It is a clear fact that we are living in the digital era for a while now. We cannot think about art and music reproduction without taking into account all the technological developments that happened in the past century. If we dig into the origins of the music machines and automata, if we dive into the archeology of the music technology, the keyboard instrument – the piano, more specifically – appears as one of the most important and relevant mechanical objects of the western art culture. From its construction and manufacturing to the massive distribution in every house of the high-class society, the piano has become an icon, a symbol of the industrialized western culture. The piano draws a line in the evolution of the mechanization of music through the XX century.

CONTAINER Ensemble presents therefore the project “The mechanization of music”. The aim is to show on stage through musical examples this fascinating evolution. From Conlon Nancarrow and his Studies for Player Piano to the piece 29, by the Berlin based Manuel Rodríguez Valenzuela, CONTAINER presents a journey through the mechanization and digitalization of music. In addition, a new piece to Johannes Kreidler (Composition Professor at the Hochschule für Musik Basel) will be presented.


Conlon Nancarrow (1912-97) - Studies for Player Piano X (1948-92)
for Player Piano

Johannes Kreidler (1980) - master / slave feedback* (2022) UA
for CONTAINER Ensemble, electronics and video

Conlon Nancarrow (1912-97) - Studies for Player Piano Y (1948-92)
for Player Piano

Manuel Rodríguez Valenzuela (1980) - 29 (2014-18)
for disklavier, ensemble - fl, cl, sx, tbn or vc, e-guit, perc., piano - electronics and video


CONTAINER Ensemble: Roberto Maqueda - percussion, Sara Méndez - saxophone, Chris Moy - e-guitar, Haize Lizarazu - piano, keyboard, Tatiana Timonina - flute, Miao Zhao - clarinet, Adrián Albadalejo - trombone, Fernando Manassero - sound engineer
CHF 15.- / 5.- (Studierende)