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Hentai Beetle

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Information

Hentai Beetle (2022)

​日本語:変態ビートル

for contrabass and percussion

Commissioned by Seiya Kondoh (Japan)

ca. 12 min.​

Score

Purchase PDF score (USD15) HERE

Program Note

  One morning, a few years ago, I suddenly found myself immobilized, unable to get out of bed. In retrospect, perhaps I was a little tired with simultaneously juggling multiple projects, navigating a cross-continental move, and grappling with the bureaucratic intricates of extending my residence permit. Fortunately, the condition did not last long for me. However, while lying on bed, I scanned my eyes across the ceiling, and felt like this situation would continue in eternity.

 

  There are many analyses of Franz Kafka’s “Metamorphosis”. However, this experience has made me realize that this phenomenon of turning into an insect just may be more common and familiar to us than we imagine it to be.

 

"Hentai" is a Japanese word meaning "metamorphosis" or "change of form".

On Composition

  Hentai Beetle was commissioned by Seiya Kondoh (cb.) and premiered at Tokyo Opera City Recital Hall on December 9, 2022, featuring Mizuki Aita (perc.) and the commissioner himself. The following year, it was featured on the NHK-FM program "Gendai no Ongaku," where composer and host Akira Nishimura reacted with, "What is this... but I like it."

  In this composition, the contrabassist lies flat on the floor facing upward. The movable leg-frame of the beetle, a blanket, and the contrabass are placed in that order on the contrabassist. Each of the beetle legs are connected via extension poles with the percussionist, also lying flat on the floor but facing downward. The percussionist is to control the beetle legs' movements according to the score. Audience members may slowly walk in a circle around the two instrumentalists on the floor. If the concert hall does not permit audience movement due to physical constraints, a live video projection as instructed on the score can be used to allow the audience to view the action happening on stage from various angles.

Past Performances

December 9, 2022 (World Premiere)

Gen-On Pegasus Concert: Ghost in the Double Bass

Tokyo Opera City Recital Hall, Tokyo, Japan

Seiya Kondoh (Cb.) and Mizuki Aita (Perc.)

[Video Archive]

Public Broadcast

June 18, 2023 (8:10-)

NHK-FM《現代の音楽》

Seiya Kondoh (Cb.) and Mizuki Aita (Perc.)

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