Stati d’Acqua (States of Water) was inspired by water’s constant physical transformations. These field recordings explore motion, stagnation, evaporation, condensation and falling. Water produces an infinite variety of sounds throughout the entire range of audible frequencies, sometimes creating the perfect white noise (i.e., the equal overlapping of all audio frequencies), and sometimes creating pitched tones. The field recordings for this composition were done along the entire course of the Tiber River, from its source at Mount Fumaiolo to its outlet in the Tyrrhenian Sea. Many techniques were employed, including special microphones and recording while in motion along springs, streams, waterfalls, caves, and waves, as well as the sea. The recordings also include the sound scan of a six-month old fetus – the fluid resonance within the human body. The work is a tribute to water, as a symbol and metaphor for the various states of mind and emotion.
Carefully observing and analyzing the microcosm of tones in the recordings of streams inspired me to organize the water’s sounds complexity into a tuning system that uses the whole ratios of Zarlino’s XVI Century system. 120 filters were used to create discrete resonant filters carefully tuned on the partials of different harmonic series, ordering the chaotic energy of water along natural intervals. Stati d’Acqua premiered on June 21, 2006 as a 30-minute, multichannel sound installation with 18 points of sound diffusion on an 80×500 meter site in the heart of Rome. The work was created for Tevereterno, a site-specific, multidisciplinary project conceived by artist Kristin Jones to celebrate the Tiber River. The version presented at Balance-Unbalance 2011 is a 17-minute reduction to 6 channels and was first performed at the Festival Ear to the Earth 2006 in New York City.