Godfried-Willem Raes

Category:componist, docent, muzikant
Gent, 03.01.1952
Genre(s):21ste eeuw / hedendaags, 20ste eeuw, klassiek experimenteel
Contact of:Logos Foundation
Contact of:<M&M> Orchestra
Actual/previous member of:Logos Ensembles

Short description

Composer, performer, researcher, philoso¬pher. “An ingenious inventor of musical automatons, unconditional musical progres¬sive thinker, constantly implicated in the never-ending battle to free music from the clutches of the elite.” (Rudy Tambuyser)

Godfried-Willem Raes (1952, Ghent) is known worldwide as one of the most original experimental music makers in the broadest sense. Not only does he compose, but also he builds his own instruments, including music robots as well as the tetrahedron-shaped concert hall for the Ghent based Logos Foundation. He is an expert designer of electronic hardware as well as software, a welder and metalworker, as well as a specialist in the area of sonar and radar technologies applied to human interfacing in musical contexts. As a stage performer he is a most acclaimed improviser as well as a dancer. He holds a doctorate from Ghent State university. He was formally trained as a composer, a musicologist and a philosopher. He is the founder of the Logos Foundation (1968) and professor of composition at the Ghent University Association. As a full-time researcher he focusses on musical robotics -the outcome of which became his overwhelming M&M robot orchestra, as well as on human interfacing (gesture control and sensing). His work has been presented and performed all over the world.

Biography

“Our past can never be in danger, it cannot be lost. Our future can. So we concentrate on building a future, avoiding to recreate a past. Machines al­ways get better, people don’t. Nothing is as human as the machine. The truth is in the machine, as long as it works. The world is finite, but its lim­its can be flexed. We strive at objective music. Romanticism, religion and ego are severe diseases. Musical art is a research activity focussed on the broadening of the expressive possibilities for man­kind.” (Godfried-Willem Raes)

Godfried-Willem Raes (Ghent, 3 January 1952) studied musicology (with Jan Broeckx) and philosophy (with Leo Apostel) at the Rijksuniversiteit Gent, and piano, clarinet, percussion and composition (with Louis de Meester and Norbert Rosseau) at the Royal Conservatory in Ghent. After leaving the conservatory in 1968, he set up the Logos-group, which quickly developed into one of the most prominent and durable factors in the Flemish experimental music scene. After taking part in the Darmstädter Ferienkurse für Neue Musik over a number of years, receiving lessons from, among others, Karlheinz Stockhausen and György Ligeti he returned to the conservatory in Ghent in 1982 as a teacher of avant-garde chamber music and was subsequently appointed full-time teacher of experimental composition. In 1993, Raes earned a doctorate in musicology with a dissertation on the “Invisible Instrument” and since 1997 he has been connected with the Orpheus Hoger Instituut voor Muziek. Besides his work as a composer and pedagogue, Raes is active as a concert organiser (with the Stichting Logos in Ghent) and as a performer of his own work and that of others, partly in collaboration with his wife Moniek Darge, the two artists together forming the Logos Duo.

Selective bibliography
- H. SABBE, Logos' heilige waanzin, in Kunst en Cultuur, 1980/4
- F. NEYRINCK, Godfried-Willem Raes, in HAM, 1983/2, p. 72-77
- Y. KNOCKAERT, Een handjevol jonge Vlaamse componisten, in Ons Erfdeel, 27, 1984, 1, p. 49-57
- J.-P. VAN BENDEGEM, Godfried-Willem Raes, in Yang, 121, 1985, p. 8-16
- A. CROISBIEN, La Fondation Logos a Gand, in Open system project, 13, 1985 p. 34-41
- D. BRANDT, Explorers at the Edge, in The Bulletin, 17/10/1991
- Y. KNOCKAERT, Godfried-Willem Raes, in Kunst en Cultuur, 1994/3
- M. DELAERE, Experimentele Muziek, in M. DELAERE, Y. KNOCKAERT and H. SABBE, Nieuwe Muziek in Vlaanderen, Brugge, 1998, p. 86-93
- J. DIERICKX, Raes Godfried-Willem: Fuzzy Harmony: studie nr. 5 (1996-97) in Contemporary Music in Flanders II: Flemish piano music since 1950, uitg. dr. J. COMPEERS en M. DELAERE, p. 35.
- M. PARENT, Muziekmaker Godfried-Willem Raes. De politieke en esthetische fundamenten van zijn werk, onuitgegeven eindscriptie, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, 2005.

©2001 Steven Vande Moortele, for Flanders Music Centre and MATRIX
©2005 Rebecca Diependaele, voor Flanders Music Centre and MATRIX (update)
 

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1993 Doctorate from the University of Ghent.

Since 1988 Professor of composition at University College Ghent, Faculty of Music.

1973-1988 Curator of the new music concerts at the Brussels Philharmonic Society.

1968-1975 Formally trained as a composer, a musicolo­gist and a philosopher.  

1968 Founder of the Logos Foundation.

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Key works:

TECHNOFAUSTUS (2000-...) alternative full scale opera for robot orchestra, dancers and performers.

GESTROBO STUDIES (1998-2008) for gesture -controlled instruments and robot orchestra.

FUZZY HARMONY STUDIES (1996/2007) for piano

SONGBOOK (1995) for voices and invisible instrument.

A BOOK OF MOVES (1992) for invisible instrument.

SHIFTS (1986) for small orchestra.

HOLOSOUND (1983) music theatre for performer and invisible instrument.

PNEUMAPHONE (1978-1983) for self-made pneumatic instruments.

DYNAMO’ (1977/1998) for electric guitar and home trainer.

EPITAFIUM (1970) for cembalo and live electronics.

 

Selective discography

Nieuwe Muziek in VlaanderenNieuwe Muziek in Vlaanderen (1998)
20th century
Anne Cambier, Henk Lauwers, Johan Van Cauwenberge, Ludo Mariën, Werner van Mechelen, BRTN Koor, BRTN Filharmonisch Orkest, Geoffrey Madge (...)
Logos WorksLogos Works (1995)
20th century, 21st century / contemporary
Godfried-Willem Raes, Moniek Darge, Logos Ensembles, Godfried-Willem Raes, Moniek Darge

Selectieve discografie als componist

Lonely RobotsLonely Robots (2010)
21st century / contemporary
Godfried-Willem Raes, Yvan Vander Sanden, Sebastian Bradt, Kristof Lauwers, Moniek Darge, Troy Rodgers, Xavier Verhelst
StudaxeStudaxe (2008)
21st century / contemporary
Player Piano, Godfried-Willem Raes, Warren Burt, Sebastian Bradt, Kris De Baerdemacker, Barbara Buchowiec
<Robodies><Robodies> (2005)
20th century
Logos Ensembles, Kristof Lauwers, Godfried-Willem Raes, Moniek Darge, Jelle Meander
Machine OrchestraMachine Orchestra (2005)
21st century / contemporary
Hans Roels, Sebastian Bradt, Moniek Darge, Godfried-Willem Raes, Kris De Baerdemacker, Barbara Buchowiec
AutomatonAutomaton (2001)
20th century, 21st century / contemporary
Godfried-Willem Raes, Kristof Lauwers, Thomas Smetryns
Godfried-Willem Raes - 4 OthersGodfried-Willem Raes - 4 Others (2000)
20th century, 21st century / contemporary
Piet Van Bockstal, Tom Pauwels, Karin De Fleyt, Logos Ensembles, Tomma Wessel, Andrew De Masi, Godfried-Willem Raes
Miniaturen voor archipelMiniaturen voor archipel (2000)
20th century
Kris Matthynssens, Pieter Stas, Goeyvaerts Strijktrio, Jan Van Landeghem, Bart Meynckens, Stefaan De Bruyne, Bart Van Kerchove, Boudewijn Buckinx (...)
Nieuwe Muziek in VlaanderenNieuwe Muziek in Vlaanderen (1998)
20th century
Anne Cambier, Henk Lauwers, Johan Van Cauwenberge, Ludo Mariën, Werner van Mechelen, BRTN Koor, BRTN Filharmonisch Orkest, Geoffrey Madge (...)
Logos WorksLogos Works (1995)
20th century, 21st century / contemporary
Godfried-Willem Raes, Moniek Darge, Logos Ensembles, Godfried-Willem Raes, Moniek Darge

Author of

Logos@50Logos@50 (2018)
21ste eeuw / hedendaags
Godfried-Willem Raes

Related Items

Documents:Contemporary Music in Flanders II (book)