136 Strings Can’t Be Wrong

Ellen Fullman and company

You should, I hope, have a spare two minutes and ten seconds. And if you don’t, then you need this video even more than those of us to whom such a concept is not entirely foreign:

This is footage of musician Ellen Fullman performing with Travis Andrews and Andy Meyerson, a duo who go by the Living Earth Show. Ellen Fullman just goes by Ellen Fullman, but she does have a sonic biosphere of her own. That would be her Long String Instrument, a massive installation of fine strings that can be extended for dozens upon dozens of feet. Wherever Long String is installed — and I’ve personally experienced the tremendous impression it makes — not just her music it emits but the instrument itself fills the given space majestically.

The video is an excerpt of Elemental View, a forthcoming document of an “expansive installation [that] inhabits an industrial sized space with 136 strings.” And if you’re in the San Francisco Bay Area, there’s a screening on November 19 in Oakland at Mills Performing Arts, where Fullman is currently the David Tudor Composer-in-Residence. This event will occur in the Littlefield Concert Hall foyer, which is apparently where Fullman first installed her instrument 37 years ago.

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