• Britta Byström
  • Fractal Music (2023)

  • Edition Wilhelm Hansen Copenhagen (World)

Commissioned by the Kammerakademie Potsdam.

  • 5 min

Programme Note

'A rough or fragmented geometric shape that can be split into parts, each of which is (at least approximately) a reduced-size copy of the whole.'

This is a description of a geometric fractal by the French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot (famous for his discovery of the fractal the Mandelbrot set in 1980). We can find many fractal patterns in nature: branches of trees, broccoli romanesco, river systems, snow flakes… My piece ”Fractal music” is built on musical fractal patterns: An identical musical figure will appear – often simultaneously – in different tempos (for instance one layer in half notes, one in quarter notes, one in eighth notes). I have also been inspired by the Danish composer Per Nørgård’s infinity series – here in its most basic form, applied on two notes only, which brings forward the fractal dimension within Nørgård’s infinity system. With those quite strict tools, I have played a fascinating game, trying to combine fractal structures with musical fantasy.

Britta Byström


More Info