Les Chants de l’Amanite

Émilie Payeur

Les Chants de l’Amanite

Édifice Wilder: Espace Bleu

Written by

Émilie Payeur

interpreted by

Jean-François Laporte

as part of:

Totem Électrique XV

Les Chants de l'Amanite is my first work for instrument, my first work intended to be played by someone other than myself. The commission for this piece came at the right time , as I was in desperate need of exploring new territories, of getting out of my comfort and my practice as a noise musician.

For this piece, I wanted to create a conceptual work, in a way, about the famous mushroom Amanita muscaria. At the beginning and at the end, we hear the botanical description of the mushroom which is generated by a text-to-speech algorithm. The text is taken from from an important book on psychoactive plants. In connection with my studies in herbalism and my interests in rituals, I ask the performer to prepare to play the piece by following directions, much like a ritual. I also ask him to ingest a few drops of Amanita muscaria essence, in order to connect with this mushroom, to impregnate himself with it, to become it.

The work is a sequence of different parts that are separated by songs. Each of these songs gives a voice to the Amanite which is sometimes cheerful, sometimes sad.

A tape created from a modular synthesizer becomes an instrument in its own right,
rather than serving only as an accompaniment, sometimes forming a duet with the Table of Babel.

I wanted to create a rather minimalist work, which would distance itself from the drone aesthetic
to be more articulated, in the detail, while giving access to the interpreter to another
dimension that is not often explored in music, that of ritual.