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Artists at school


Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine

Philippe Patenaude

Performing arts
Music

Presentation

Philippe Patenaude

A self-taught true jack-of-all-trades, Philippe Patenaude likes the unusual, incorporating in his compositions various sounds and noises taken from nature or from his immediate environment. His compositions explore the multiple possibilities offered by the integration of sounds in music (water, waves, sand, dead leaves, earth, wood, wind, water bottles, crowd noises, grass, etc.). A self-taught multi-instrumentalist, author, composer and performer, he has participated in various training sessions, notably in music and scoring. Recording and mixing his own songs in his home studio, the artist is also part of the group Les Hameçons salés. This group presents a musical/theatrical tale entitled Icitte asteure, in which the artist integrates various sounds in the story to the point of "making them speak". A traverse flute and guitar instructor as well as a CÉGEP teacher, Philippe Patenaude has extensive experience with teens.

Proposed approach and type of activities


Sounds around me

The artist begins by asking students to find in their living environment two objects which are not common musical instruments but which produce interesting low and high sounds. During the workshop, each participant presents his or her sound maker and explains its origin and the reason for choosing it. The purpose of the workshop is to create a piece with sounds and then to record it.


Examples of activities

1. Primary

Introduction

  • Presentation of the artist’s approach (notably the use of sounds from different objects).
  • Listening to excerpts from music composed by the artist and that integrate sounds. Students are then invited to find the objects that were used.
  • Short classroom demonstration of sound recording processes.

Presentation

  • Taking turns, students are invited to come to the microphone in order to state their name and give a short presentation using objects that they will have brought to class. The objective is to have the class discover each object’s sounds. Students then talk about the sounds they liked.

Two sections

  • The artist reminds participants what a low and a high sound are, then determines a section for high sounds and one for low sounds. Students choose an object, join the section that they think is the right one, then evaluate if everyone is in the appropriate section.

Soundscapes

  • The artist begins by presenting two signs that he uses to produce the soundscape: the first is dynamic and directs young people, the second designates the section that must play.
  • The soundscape consists of superimposing the sounds one on top of another by beginning with high sounds. When all the sounds are integrated in the soundscape, the artist plays with the nuances and the sections using signs presented beforehand. This soundscape is recorded.

Playing simultaneously in time

  • The artist uses a ball to have students play together and simultaneously. Participants must make a sound at the precise moment that the dropped ball hits the floor.
  • The exercise is recorded so that young people can evaluate whether or not they are synchronized. If they are synchronized, only one sound is heard. If not, there is an interval between the sounds.

The sound song

  • The artist first demonstrates a very simple rhythm ("boom ba boomboom ba boom ba boomboom ba… " ), which young people are invited to reproduce with their voice.
  • Young people then repeat this rhythm using the chosen object. The low instruments  play the "boom"  sounds while the high instruments play the "ba"  sound (Primary 2 and higher). The exercise is recorded so that young people can evaluate if their rhythm is good and if they are ready for the final recording.
  • The song is based on this rhythm, which will be interrupted by a solo during which the student is invited to do what he or she likes with the objects. The student can also sing and dance if he or she wishes. The song is recorded.

Conclusion

  • Students are invited to discuss what they appreciated and learned.
  • A compact disc containing the soundscape and the sound song is given to the class at the end of the workshop.


2. Secondary

Introduction

  • Presentation of the artist’s approach (notably the use of sounds from different objects).
  • Listening to excerpts from music composed by the artist and that integrate sounds. Students are then invited to find the objects that were used.
  • Short classroom demonstration of sound recording processes.

Two sections

  • Students choose an object that they like, place themselves in the section that they think is the right one (those of low sounds or high sounds), then evaluate if each student is in the appropriate section.

Soundscapes

  • The objective of the exercise is to create a soundscape in three parts. In the first part, young people rapidly put together sounds one after another by beginning with high sounds and ending with low ones.  Participants then exchange four strokes between low sounds and high sounds. Finally, a student begins a rhythm or an effect with a chosen object, after which another student is invited to imitate the sequence of sounds. This sequence is then reproduced by all of the students.
  • The soundscape is recorded. Afterwards, students listen to the sequence, tell others what this soundscape makes them think of and discuss the sounds that they found interesting or funny.

Playing simultaneously in time

  • The artist uses a ball to have students play together and simultaneously. Participants must make a sound at the precise moment that the dropped ball hits the floor. The group works in sections.
  • The exercise is recorded so that young people can evaluate whether or not they are synchronized. If they are synchronized, only one sound is heard. If not, there is an interval between the sounds.

Sound song

  • A student proposes a series of chords played over and over on the guitar, while the rest of the group is invited to imagine a way of accompanying these chords.
  • The artist determines approximately four sections, groups them by tone  and tells them the rhythm they must play, with each rhythm being complementary.
  • Students are then invited to take part in a rehearsal, which is recorded. By listening to the recording, the group evaluates what did and did not work, and makes the necessary adjustments.
  • For the final recording, a sequence is determined between the various sections so that the music evolves (for example: the guitar  starts off alone, after which the low sounds join in, etc.).
  • The musical number is recorded.

Conclusion

  • Students are asked to discuss what they appreciated and learned
  • A compact disc containing the soundscape and the sound song is given to the class at the end of the workshop.

Special conditions

The workshop requires recording and sound system equipment as well as blank compact discs, at a cost of $30 (maximum of $100 per day of hosted activities).


For information

Philippe Patenaude
Phone : 418 752-3326
Email : filoupat@hotmail.com

Subject to taxes (GST, PST)

No

Levels

All levels

Available in

In every regions

Other language(s)

French

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