21 Questions with Michael HearstBy Michael Hearst
November 02, 2009
TNB A&C: Please explain what just happened.
MH: What JUST happened? Well, I just sent an email to Margaret Leng Tan. It said…
Hope Spain went well. Welcome home.
I’ve come up with a perfect unusual creature for you… the Barking Spider! And actually I’ve begun composing it. The Barking Spider (selenocosmia crassipes) is a tarantula found in Australia, which has the added bonus of making hissing or bark-like sounds. They can reach a leg-span of 8 inches, and the female can live up to 30 years. Here’s a picture: http://www.thedailylink.com/australiantarantulas/species/crassipes.html
The piece I am writing will use three toy pianos and, of course, will be a tarantella… though a very slow and ominous tarantella. And then we can overdub Oscar doing his thing, which I will probably pitch shift to make sound a bit more spider-like. Sound good?
What are the ranges of your toy pianos? Any that go particularly lower or higher than another?
In case it’s not clear from the email, I’m going to have Margaret as a guest performer on my next album, “Songs For Unusual Creatures.” She lives with five dogs, and asked if one of them, Oscar, could be included in the recording.