Double Voiced is an experimental work composed and performed by Juliana Snapper in collaboration with mathematician and sound designer Miller Puckette.
Exploring the ramifications of treating the vocal signal as a living, material presence, the work has evolved through several unique performances in the U.S. and abroad (Mexico, China, Oceania…).
It began by designing a briefcase-sized gizmo that would let another person sing with Juliana Snapper’s voice. Then the gizmo was rewired to allow Juliana Snapper to channel other singers.
Finally, while on tour in Asia, Juliana Snapper engaged with two iconic avant-garde opera singers : Cathy Berberian and Carol Plantamura — forming a tight reflexive synchrony with each sonic apparition.
Among other places, Juliana Snapper performed Double Voiced on Oct 24, 2013 in China, at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music.
Watch/Listen to an excerpt of that first performance of Double Voiced in its near-final layout.
A performance of Double Voiced was filmed in its entirety for the ATLAS Summer Experimental Music Week, on Aug 6, 2015. As a programme of live electronic music and live full dome projection, it took place in the Fiske Planetarium of the Colorado University Boulder.
In each performance, the unseen voices have dramatic and musical agency. Since Juliana Snapper cannot anticipate who will surface, or what that singer will do, she must be ready to respond in the moment to the expressive actions of whoever shows up.
Juliana Snapper’s agency is primarily responsive — a “listening vocality” that when successful leads to a sense of co-creation and vocal intimacy between embodied and disembodied women and reveals a circuit of composition and entrainment that is core to the post-war Modernist project.