Pascale Criton

Pascale Criton (1954-) is a French musicologist and a composer of contemporary music, more specifically microtonal music.She is particularly known for exploiting very dense microtonal scales such as 1/12 tone or 1/16 and beyond [ [ biography | Pascale Criton, compositrice ] ] for the particular perception properties they imply.


Born in 1954 in Paris, Pascale Criton had a compositional formation with Ivan Wyschnegradsky, Gérard Grisey and Jean-Etienne Marie. [ [ biography | Pascale Criton, compositrice ] ] She took part in the Darmstadt Academy in 1980 and 1988, and had an electroacoustic formation (CIRM,1980-82). [ [ biography | Pascale Criton, compositrice ] ] She also had a computer music training course, IRCAM(1986). Furthermore she also got interested into ethnomusicologie. She took part in the activities of the "Groupe de Recherche sur la Tradition Orale" (Abidjan 1979).

Her works are created in France and abroad: Darmstadt, American Festival of Microtonal Music (New York), Ircam, Radio-France, Manca, Today Musics, Midem, Presences, Intermusica, Ars Electronica, Ijsbrecker Institute, Archipelago Festival, Ilkhom XX (Tashkent), Simn (Bucharest). [ [ biography | Pascale Criton, compositrice ] ] ..


Since the early 80ties, she's investigated the microvariability of the sound and she dedicated her instrumental composition to microtonal tuned instruments (pianos, microtonal guitares, strings tuned in 1/4th, 1/8th, 1/12th , 1/16th tone) which it is most of the time associated with diatonic instruments as well as to the Audio synthesis

Her aesthethic and intellectual approach of the music is strongly linked to the thought of philosopher Gilles Deleuze she met in 1987. [ [ biography | Pascale Criton, compositrice ] ] Pascale Criton takes interest most particularly in the considerations concerning the continuum. In regard to this, her compositional approach lies in going above the natural discontinuity of scales to reach some state of continuity while closing up the continuum thanks to very dense microtonal scales. (very small intervals et very close to each other). And she takes advantage of the very specific properties these microtonal scales have on the ear perception.

As a matter of fact an interval of two or three 1/16th tone is too small and is barely recognisable by the ear. Because these intervals are beyond the ear discrimination's threshold. [Herschel, David; Omer Corlaix; Makis Solomos; Roman Brotbeck et al. Pascale Criton, les univers microtempérés', ("Pascale Criton, The micromoderate universes") Collection A la ligne vol. 1, Ensemble 2e2m, 2000.] But it has an impact of the sound texture perception( on the timbre, the rhythm, the feeling of time. So she takes advantage of this property to create subtle shift of notes that give rise to progressive but imperceptible change of musical texture.


* "Mémoires" for 1/16th tone piano (1982)
* "Thymes", for 1/4th tone Piano and digital synthesis (1988)
* "Clines", for bass flute, clarinett, violin, cello, piano and tape (1990)
* "Biffurcations" for cello and 1/16th tone piano (1994)
* "Territoires imperceptibles", for bass flute, 1/16th tone tuned guitar and cello(1997)
* "La Ritournelle et le galop", 1/16th tone tuned guitar (1995)
* "Le passage des heures", For voice, Cello, violin and flute (1998)
* "Artefacts"for flute, clarinet, horn, timbales, three guitars (amplified, in 1/12th tone), violin, viola, cello, doublebasse(2001)


* Herschel, David; Omer Corlaix; Makis Solomos; Roman Brotbeck "et al." "Pascale Criton, les univers microtempérés', ("Pascale Criton, The micromoderate universes") Collection A la ligne vol. 1, Ensemble 2e2m, 2000.


External links

* [ Pascale Criton's Offical homepage in english and french with audio files]
* [ Page in english and french with an audio extract of "La Ritournelle et le galop"]

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  • Pascale Criton — (* 1954 in Paris) ist eine französische Musikwissenschaftlerin und Komponistin. Sie arbeitet mit zeitgenössischer und insbesondere mikrotonaler Musik. Dabei nutzt sie öfters Zwölftel und Sechzehntel Tonhöhen Differenzen wegen deren besonderer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pascale Criton — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Criton. Pascale Criton (née à Paris en 1954) est une musicologue et une compositrice française de musique contemporaine se consacrant tout particulièrement aux échelles microtonales. Elle est tout… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Microtonal music — Composer Charles Ives chose the chord above as good possibility for a fundamental chord in the quarter tone scale, akin not to the tonic but to the major chord of traditional tonality.(Boatright 1971, 8 9)   …   Wikipedia

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