William Weir

For Your Tuesday: Metronomes!

In automated rhythm on January 4, 2011 at 3:56 am

Because we’re just crazy about metronomes here at 440Hz, here’s Gyorgy Ligeti’s Poeme Symphonique. Ligeti composed the piece for 100 metronomes in 1962. Its first public performance came in 1963, in the Netherlands. Dutch TV was on hand to film it for later broadcast. When the last ticking metronomes finally stopped, there was a long silence. And then boos. A few threats. Dutch broadcasters decided to air a soccer match instead of the performance.

Should you care to put on your own version of Poeme Symphonique, here are the rather elaborate instructions for performance, per Ligeti himself.

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