Owen Davis (B. 1989)
I am a performer, composer, and improviser dedicated to creating music that is consciously at home in today's world.
I feel, as an artist living in the 21st century, that I am charged with the task of meaningfully creating music that serves as a mirror to society or culture at large. This can be achieved through the audience’s connection to the absolute organization of the musical (sonic) vibrations, through the immersion of self through interactive and engaging dramatic or theatrical events, or through the experience of perceiving the world briefly through another human’s ears. In this sense, I view my role as a composer — in collaboration with performers — in the same category as the philosopher whose job it is to make the audience think about life and the world around them differently. I want to invite performers with welcome arms into my sonic world. I take great care to craft not only the musical nuance and statement, but also the experience of hearing my intensely personal approach to music.
My work constantly evolves as I try to reach far beyond the traditional palette of sounds to yield a collage of extra-musical nuance and expression — being inspired as much by today’s natural occurrences such as cell phone feedback as great composers music —experiences created through these performances hold long-lasting artistic weight despite having one-time and site specific artifacts as the main creative centerpiece. For example, Pencil Trio in Three Words (2011), which was written with the purpose of blurring the lines between performer and audience member, sent each member in attendance home with their own personalized copy of the score. In CHESS PIECE (2012), I feature a live life-size game of chess as the realization of the score, and fearlessly create a space to invite unknown results to live and create comfortably. In my first piano solo, TELEPHONE, the performer interacts with a spoken word poet, midi keyboard with pre-recorded telephone sounds, cell phones, and the piano using traditional and extended techniques. In the same way that my music is constantly evolving with the new musical and non-musical experiences in my life, my aesthetic sensibilities are ever-growing to make my works more potent.
In general, I strive to create experiences that accompany my music that have real impact for the audience beyond the performance.