Tuesday, August 23, 2011

FMEL shocks Chicagoans into a new world of Latino electronic music

August 23, 2011 | by Catalina Maria Johnson

Stephanie Manriquez and Charly Garcia, co-founders of the Latin Electronic Music Festival - called “FMEL” from its initials in Spanish - are taking Chicagoans into the brave new world of electronic music.

“We want to have new digital contemporary art and music from Latin America, so we created this space,” Manriquez says.

The digital art at the heart of the Fest starts with music. Local and visiting musicians and composers working within a variety of genres are showcased. These sound artists compose music and use both created and sampled sound to compose pieces that can be very abstract, to those which have more recognizable melodies or rhythms with a Latin influence.

But all the pieces incorporate technology as an essential instrument: from computers, IPads, video projection, to the manipulation of devices to make sounds.

Many electronic artists also work with images that accompany their music. This visual component is also very important, as Manriquez describes: “each of our artists or our showcases [they] come with a projection in the back that makes the complement on their sounds, the image moves as the sound goes.”

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