In The Forum VI


Proklos : Time and its composite properties are something we can also explore together.
Sympnoia : This would be most interesting, as discovering new methods of unbinding Time and releasing its complete potential is an aspect of organizing sound that warrants new investigations.
Pro: Let us begin in attempting to more fully understand potential realizations of the word “ἁρμονία” – armonia, “fitting together” or “in agreement” or “having concord” or “intonation along the length of a string” or “the accordance of the planetary spheres”, but from a new perspective. If we imagine a length of string, and it’s divisions made solely with similar purpose, with the resultant sounds “fitting together” or “joining the whole”, then we will have a series of lengths which, when placed in sequence, has been known to be called a “mode” or “scale”. These, when taken in totality, comprise a form resonating in “ἁρμονία” – harmony. Now we certainly have heard sounds which, though using these pitches with their resultant intevals or “distances” between, do not go only in a sequential order but most times go in different directions, with leaps and skips. But when thought of and heard as a totality, conform to the “ἁρμονία” – harmony. Now this has all to do with frequency. But what if we could imagine a “ἁρμονία” – a “harmony” of Time? of Duration? of starting with this primary cause - “ἁρμονία” – harmony - generating all participant materials and parameters of sonic elements? Let us again return to the image of a length of string, but re-imagine this length as a “length of time”. Now imagine this “string” divided into sub-lengths which form the totality of Time for any given duration of music. Let us then, in a way underneath the primary cause of Time, place the participant elements – frequency, timbre, internal rhythm, amplitude, spatial placement. Let use use the term “composite time” to define this way of organizing sound within Time.
Sym : So we organize Time into "lengths"? On what basis? With what method or principle?
Pro: Let us, for an example, start with the golden mean. If we divide an entire duration into parts which contain time-lengths in the proportions of 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, etc. we will show the "length" of the sonic composition, having those units of time-lengths. We can consider that, if in the course of the composition, all these lengths are used - though in any order - that the principle of: “ἁρμονία/ armonia" has been achieved.
Sym : I see! So if in having a quartet of musicians playing these time-lengths and all time-lengths were used in any various divergent independent manner, then we would attain “ἁρμονία".
Pro: Exactly. Let us consider the following work, "Composite for 4 Violas"