During the 20th and 21st centuries musical training for performers has been increasingly geared towards a virtuosic representation of previous musical styles and experimentation with new languages and techniques. At the same time, present socio-economical conditions make the congregation of large ensembles and audiences truly difficult. The lack of performing possibilities for soloists due to the scarce amount of venues and sponsorship causes an isolation of performers in the community.
Usually, there is a strong connection between ensembles and the repertoire they include in their programs. Some ensembles are linked exclusively to the repertoire they represent, creating a limiting symbiosis between style, genre, and performer. Programming, for the majority of ensembles with set geometry, is restricted to the music created for that specific set of instruments.
This phenomenon creates not only a separation between soloists and ensembles, but also between styles and genres in relationship to the performer forces. This also affects the possibilities for living composers to create music to be performed in the same venues as music from previous centuries. Music repertoire is, therefore, fragmented in its conception and realization.
After a conscientious analysis of the present music scene, a group of performers, arts administrators, composers, and scholars have identified the issues in music making that soloists, ensembles, audiences, and composers currently face.
In response to those issues, EnVaGe attempts to create an amplified ensemble of variable geometry defined by the following characteristics:
Variable geometry. The ensemble is formed by approximately 16 solo performers who will interact in different ensemble settings according to the program needs (i.e. solo, chamber, or orchestral music). Therefore not every player performs in every piece of any given program. This format also allows several combinations to perform a wide range of repertoire across genres and styles, including contemporary music.
Formed entirely by soloists. Each performer has the necessary level of training, artistry, and experience to perform a wide spectrum of repertoire and genres with the highest musical quality, including solo pieces, chamber music, and orchestral arrangements.
Technological component. EnVaGe is an amplified ensemble of variable geometry that understands the influence of technology in its current aesthetic. The electronic component allows us to program a significant amount of new music, which is largely conceived for electronic and electroacoustic instruments as well as mixed media.
Programming. Due to the flexible nature of the interaction of performing forces provided by variable geometry, the programming possibilities include solo music and chamber repertoire. In addition, the orchestral repertoire is included through the interpretation of existing arrangements suitable for the format of the ensemble.
In this way, EnVaGe is able to play music from every time period and every style from the history of western music. Since working with living composers is also a priority for this project, the ensemble is making every possible effort to commission new works and develop close relationships with current composers. The goal when programming and performing is to unify music across genres and styles in one unique music experience.