Aaron Pergram performing “Doppelgänger” live

While we’re still working on the studio cut of this piece, here’s a video of Aaron Pergram’s live performance of “Doppelgänger” from the Future Music Oregon concert, November 19th, 2011.

Doppelganger (2011) from Simon Hutchinson on Vimeo.

When composing for soloist and electronics, I often approach pieces as concerti, with the live performer conversing with an electronic “ensemble.” Traditionally, this genre has given composers the opportunity to explore the relationship between an individual and society as well as provide discourse on the importance of both individual and social expression and contentment. The introduction of the soloist’s doppelgänger, a supernatural duplicate, turns this piece into a kind of double concerto, with the soloist faced not only with society but with the implications of the spectral double, supporting or undermining the efforts of the individual to find a place in the social world.


I’ve finally had the chance to put together the video of my piece Canned! performed last month at the Future Music Oregon Concert. This concert was the premiere of the OEDO (The Oregon Electronic Device Orchestra), and hopefully the first of many pieces the new ensemble will perform…

…Though someone else will need to write the piece for next time, as I’ve got to get working on my PhD recital.


“Canned!” written for the Oregon Electronic Device Orchestra (OEDO), was inspired by the sounds one can make with a can of soda.

Although not necessarily pertinent to the piece, here three things I discovered in preparing these performance notes:
1. The average American drinks two cans of soda a day, for a total of 50 gallons a year.
2. There are 40.5 grams of sugar in a 12 oz can of Coke. The recommended sugar intake is no more than 40 grams per day for a 2000 calorie diet.
3. Soda is delicious.

“Requiem” for shamisen and electronics

Requiem (2010)


Here is more of the bounty from the concerts earlier this month. Normally I would gush about how wonderful my performers were (which they always are), but, in this case, I was the performer.

And I was fantastic.

I performed this piece, “Requiem,” for shamisen and live electronics, at the Future Music Oregon concert on May 8th. This is the studio version of that piece, as sometimes live recordings of electronic pieces can be tricky.

This piece, for shamisen and live electronics, is dedicated to my friend, Kawamura Shinyu. Shinyu was the first person I met when I arrived in Japan, and it was through him that I came to study the shamisen. Sadly, Shinyu also grappled with bipolar disorder, and took his own life during one of his depressive episodes. Through this piece, I hope to celebrate his life and express my gratitude for his endless kindness, hospitality, and generosity to me.