Honey, Milk and Blood

for women's chorus and electronics

Saturday April 16, 2011
MicroTextual: music with words | words without music
MiMoDa Studio, Los Angeles, CA

Performed by:
Andrea Zomorodian, soprano
Troy Quinn, conductor
Rafael Liebich, electronics

MicroFest Chorus (*Soloists):
*Amelia Tobiason, Carmina Escobar, Sara Frondoni
*Tany Ling, Eleni Pantages, Lizzie Shafer, Rachel Surden
*Argenta Walther, Jess Basta, April Guthrie


Honey, Milk and Blood is a work for women’s chorus and electronics, with text by Jillian Burcar. Its genesis is a paragraph written by Serbian-American inventor Nikola Tesla in 1926:

“The acquisition of new fields of endeavor by women, their gradual usurpation of leadership, will dull and finally dissipate feminine sensibilities, will choke the maternal instinct, so that marriage and motherhood may become abhorrent and human civilization draw closer and closer to the perfect civilization of the bee.”

The concept of the hive animates the performance of the singers, who alternate between operating as individuals and as a collective. Much of the piece is based on overtones of 49Hz and 60Hz, 60Hz being the ground hum that emanates from electrical objects in the United States. As a prime mover behind the development of AC power, Tesla gave birth to this sound over a century ago. 49Hz is a low G, and the resulting composite scale from the two overlapping overtone series forms a link between our sonic world and Tesla’s.

Many of the ideas present in Honey, Milk and Blood made their way into the chamber opera Light and Power, also with text by Jillian Burcar.


For full score, parts, and electronics patch, contact the composer.

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