The jury of the 2023 Palma Ars Acustica, who met in Zagreb on 16 June at the kind invitation of HRT, designated this year's winner:
Ondrej Kalužák with his work Silent Roof, entered by Czech Radio
(text by Kateřina Minaříková)
The Palma Ars Acustica jury had the following to say about the winning work:
“The work takes us into an artificial universe, in such an organic way that the listener is almost unaware of it, guided playfully through the microscopic sounds of an imaginary brass band.”
The jury noted the refined dialogue between the game proposed by the generated voice in the piece (juggling between humor and strict orders) and the refined sound universe, allowing a magnificent progression during the 36 minutes of the work.
The jury also gave a special mention to Temporary Stored by Joseph Kamaru, entered by DKU. They wanted to pay special tribute to the value of Kamaru’s approach as a sound artist, calling into question our European-centric position in the field of sound. They were impressed by the way Kamaru had captured the essence of the archive.
All entries of the 2023 Palma Ars Acustica can be found in MUS under the reference AA/2023/03/05/01-09.
"I would like to thank the jury of the Palma Ars Acustica for awarding me this prize. I am especially delighted because it’s my first longer composition, so winning was a very pleasant surprise.The composition ‘Silent Roof’ aims to evoke a sense of ‘lostness’ in today’s online space, which is filled with information and disinformation and the feeling of failure some people might experience when trying to navigate through it. The listener finds themselves in an abstract space where a voice informs them about the state of the world and gives them instructions in nonsensical quotes, and the roof is the only way out. Here I’d like to thank Kateřina Minaříková for creating the text for the composition, providing her voice for the voiceover, and endless discussions on the whole concept of the piece. I’d like to note that in the composition, no acoustic musical instruments were used with the exception of the voice modified by autotune. Instead, I used various types of synthesis or PCM [Pulse Code Modulation] sample-based instruments whose timbre is modified by differently tuned resonators created within the MaxMSP environment. This system of patches also takes care of the tempo-rhythmic structure, which is mainly based on a numerical series. Also, I highly recommend listening with headphones because the piece uses binaural spatialization which wouldn’t be perceptible otherwise. Once again, thank you for the prize, and enjoy ‘Silent Roof’." – Ondrej Kalužák
"All the nominated works of Palma Ars Acustica 2023 are excellent radiophonic works, so of course, I was very much surprised – in fact shocked – that this award for the diversity and freedom of creation that appears on the European acoustic arts scene, goes to our production and especially to its authors. Since 2013, Palma Ars Acustica as a radio competition platform has been offering a variety of possibilities for hearing the world through the uniquely acousmatic medium, that the radio is. This makes me all the more happy, and I would like to take this opportunity to pay a big tribute to all the pieces nominated, not only this year, but all the past ones also – its authors and radio producers, without whom this ‘spice’ of the radio airwaves could not flow in its veins. Thank you for that." – Ladislav Železný, curator, dramaturg, sound designer, Czech Radio
The Prix Palma Ars Acustica (PAA) is an international competition organized by the Ars Acustica community to promote and honour outstanding productions of authors in the world of Ars Acustica: radio art, sound art, media art, text sound compositions, electroacoustic music, electronics, live electronica, etc. Candidates should be put forward by specialized producers from EBU radio organizations.