Drone MP3 by (and Interview with) Joanna Brouk

Back in 1972, Charles Amirkhanian interviewed the under-recognized composer Joanna Brouk. Audio of the interview is interspersed with examples of her work, which as heard in this 70-minute recording is comprised of slow, lengthy, drone-like performances on acoustic instruments (notably piano) that have a nearly glacial approach to melody, but that don’t dispense with melody entirely (MP3). One can recognize in the pieces root notes and variations and a clear sense of compositional narrative, but it requires not so much patience and attention as it does an appreciation for a pace that essentially allows for a note to complete its decay before it is succeeded by another note.

Just to define “under-recognized,” in contrast with many subjects of Amirkhanian’s extensive catalog of interviews, a Google Blog Search today for “Joanna Brouk” yields exactly two entries, both from the past month or so (google.com/blogsearch). More details at archive.org, where the Amirkhanian interview is housed as part of the Other Minds collection. Any additional information about Brouk and her work would be appreciated.

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