George Antheil – Composer – Ballet mécanique (original version) () The score to Ballet Mécanique is available from your music dealer, item Programme Note. George Antheil Ballet mécanique (revised version). Score [In ] Ballet Mécanique, its “machine age” percussion riffs now sound fun rather. Ballet Mécanique (–24) is a Dadaist post-Cubist art film George Antheil’s Ballet Mécanique () was originally conceived as an accompaniment for the film and was scheduled to.

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It was the magic of light on the white metal. Retrieved 11 November Although the film was intended to use Antheil’s score as a soundtrack, the two parts were not brought together until the s.

The very first, written in calls for 16 player pianos playing four separate parts, for four bass drums, three xylophones, a tam-tam, seven electric bells, a siren, and three different-sized airplane propellors high wood, low wood, and metalas well as two human-played pianos.

The featured film print is the original version, premiered in Vienna on 24 September by Frederick Kiesler.

Mobilized in August bsllet service in the French armyhe spent two years at the front in Argonne.

A’ — Xylophones return in triple meter to recall Theme 1 m However, at the Carnegie Hall premiere on 10 Aprilthe fans were positioned to blow into the audience, upsetting the patrons. It sounds like an onslaught of confusing chords, punctuated by random rings, wails, or pauses. Trenton’s ‘bad boy’ of music”.

Ballet mécanique (Antheil, George) – IMSLP/Petrucci Music Library: Free Public Domain Sheet Music

It alternates between irregular measures of complete silence and pianola with percussion. It remains famous for its radical repetitive style and instrumentation, as well as its storied history.


As the bizarre instrumentation may suggest, this was no ordinary piece of music.

InPaul Lehrman produced a ballef print of the film. Among these, player pianosballlet propellersand electric bells stand prominently onstage, moving as machines do, and providing the visual side baller the ballet.

Inthe film was premiered with a new score by Michael Nyman. And it has now been done several times. The true film score must have been much simpler and more precise, and possibly the one that would end up orchestrating in It is only the first of many visual puns in the film—a seeming display of the film’s sheer visual modernity, as intended by its creators from the get-go. San Francisco Symphony, It moves through rhythmic and intervallic variations until a bridge into the next theme measure 38 in the original scoring.

Unfortunately, these piano rolls are now thought to be lost.

Ballet mécanique (Antheil, George)

The xylophones eventually cut out to make way for a serene pianola passage. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. However before zcore, director and composer agreed to go their different ways [ vague ]. Thus, in each period, a slightly different copy of the Ballet has circulated: The melody is mostly built from parallel series of consonant chords, sometimes sounding pentatonic but often making no tonal sense at all.

This installation was at the Gallery from 12 March to 7 May In Novembera version of the score for live scroe which required further editing, since live players couldn’t play it as fast as electronic instruments was premiered in Columbus, Ohio by an ensemble from the Peabody Conservatory of Musicconducted by Julian Pellicano.


In September he almost died after a mustard gas attack by the German troops at Verdun. In the Paris performances, beginning in Junethe fans were pointed up at the ceiling.

After the concert, there were some fights in the street. Nevertheless, with respect to the original synchronized film, and despite the mecaniquue of last sound performance and its consistent reliability with Antheil’s original plans for its concert made by Lehrman himself and endorsed by the Schirmer publisher for the DVD Unseen Cinema: Antheil wrote several versions of the piece.

George Antheil

As it turned out, there was no way to keep so many pianolas synchronized, so early performances combined the four parts into a single set of pianola rolls and augmented the two human-played pianos with 6 or more additional instruments. InAntheil wrote a shortened and much tamer version for four pianos, four xylophones, two electric bells, two propellers, timpaniglockenspielmecaniquw other percussion.

Retrieved 18 October Coda — A startling change occurs when all instruments cut out except for a balpet bell m Until the s, this version of the piece had never been performed in its original instrumentation, since the technology for linking and antbeil multiple player pianos, whether 4 or 16, although theoretically possible when Antheil conceived the piece, turned out not to be practical.