Stephan Dunkelman is acousmatic compositions are intended not only for concerts but also for exhibitions (Charlotte Marchal, sculptor; Axel Miret, painter), choreogrpahies (Michèle Noiret), fashion design (Azniv Afsar), short films (Jérôme Thomas), and documentary films (André Dartevelle). Collaboration with artists working in other fields, especially in the visual arts, has led Stephan Dunkelman to experimentation that has enriched and brought into focus the ‘space’ that music must englobe. It has also allowed him to develop the imaginal qualities of the sonic material he uses in his concert music.

Stephan Dunkelman obtained a graduate degree in acousmatic composition (1999) as a student of Annette Vande Gorne at the Conservatoire royal de Mons (Mons, Belgium).

His music has won prizes and honours at several international competitions: Music for Multimedia at Bourges (2004); ex æquo Public’s Prize at Métamorphoses 2000; award (1998) and special mention (1993) at the Stockholm Electronic Arts Award; honourable mention at Prix Ars Electronica (1995); and finalist in the Luigi Russolo Competition (1991).

Metharcana has been performed in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Arc-et-Senans, Barcelona, Berlin, Birmingham, Brussels, Montréal, Paris, Saint-Denis and São Paulo…

Metharcana was produced using material intended for a dance production. Starting from the idea that works of this type explore time within a defined space, I became interested in developing a paradox of this interweaving of dance and music — by exploring the use of space within a timeframe defined by the choreographic structure. It is this interaction that I have tried to transpose into this concert piece where two seemingly ill-matched sonic worlds are brought together and treated with the morpho-dynamic analogies that make the relationship viable and suggest a different listening experience — that of a neglected “a-concrete” voice.

Metharcana was realized, with support from the Communauté française de Belgique, at the composer’s studio in 1998 and premiered on November 11, 1998 during the 5th International Acousmatic Festival L’Espace du son in XL Théâtre du Grand Midi (Brussels, Belgium). I would like to thank choreographer Michèle Noiret for giving me the opportunity to work in the dance field and to Emmanuel Favreau, from Ina-GRM, for providing me with the GRM Tools software, a precious musical toolbox. Metharcana was awarded the First Prize at the Stockholm Electronic Arts Award (Sweden, 1998).