Monash University
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Black Vulture

Version 2 2021-09-04, 08:41
Version 1 2020-01-24, 09:58
posted on 2021-09-04, 08:41 authored by Cat HopeCat Hope

On this page you will find the score materials, previous recordings, reviews, program notes and performance instruction for:

Black Vulture

A music composition for electric Bass, synthesiser and electric harp/amplified voice.

Commissioned by I.R.E ensemble, Paris, 2019.

You will need the Decibel ScorePlayer to perform this work.


Black Vulture is part of a series of ‘black pieces’ that propose an idea of black as a sound. Other works in this series are Black Emperor (2012), Black Disciples (2015) and Black Tide (2017). Written in animated notation, the piece provides performers with some elements of freedom, and other aspects that are tightly controlled.

D1 = distortion effect of choice 1 D2 = distortion of choice 2 F = Free choice of sounds (can be fixed or changing)

Cross through the box indicates switch off that effect.

The score is proportional, and the width of the line is the dynamic. Increase in width indicates an increase in volume and activity. You can use the score literally or as a kind of ‘action notation’. Take care to synchronise your part carefully with the others when there is an indication to do so.

The score should be read in the Decibel ScorePlayer application on an iPad, or as a video score, available on the composers’ website.

The majority of my compositions use scores that are read on an iPad tablet computer, using the Decibel ScorePlayer, an application available on the App Store . Any fixed media is embedded in the score, and some feature automated functions. In the case of ensemble works, multiple iPads can be networked on a LAN or over the Internet so parts can be read in a synchronised way. You should upload the score file (ending with.dsz) to your iPad from your computer via AirDrop on an Apple, or cable from a PC. Instructions on how to do this and using the Decibel ScorePlayer, more generally are included in the Application, which ships with five other scores.

Thus my works have different versions of the score, as you may see above. A PDF/PNG file of the score ‘image’, a DSZ file to upload onto the iPad for performance, and for some less complex scores, a video version. Hardcopies are also available from my publisher. You can find out more about the Decibel ScorePlayer, and how to make your own scores for it, here.


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