• George Antheil
  • Ballet mécanique (original version) (1923)

  • G Schirmer Inc (World)

Contact bcposner@gmail.com for video rental information.

  • 3xyl.elec bells.3propellers.tam.4dm.siren/2pf/16 pianolas (min.4/written in 4 parts) (MIDI realization of the mechanical piano parts on rental)
  • 27 min

Programme Note

Evoking riots in Paris and New York upon its concert-premiere in 1926 and prompting Aaron Copland and Virgil Thomson to pen respectively, “the boy is a genius” and “the first composer of our generation,” this ballet for mechanical instruments and percussion is Antheil’s signature piece. Employing deft use of multiple percussion, pianola (mechanical piano), four pianos, sampled sounds of electric bells, sirens, and airplane propellers, and even silence as an integral part of the score’s composition, Antheil’s creation anticipates minimalism and challenges the distinctions between noise and music.

Listen

Ballet Mecanique

View Score

Technical Performance Guide

Discography