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Intersection: Chris Belt

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Chris Belt. Photo: Matthew Peddie WMFE.

Orlando composer, conductor and performer Chris Belt is on the leading edge of contemporary classical music. Belt joined Intersection to talk about finding music in unlikely places, like the leaves of a plant, and he played some songs on his guitar. 

Belt said that he has a performs a piece with his wife, who is also an oboist, improvising sounds with a house plant.

“There is a long tradition in 20th century music of using house plants. John Cage wrote a piece for a cactus,” he said.

“You put a contact microphone on [the cactus] and you pluck the spines of the cactus and it makes a very percussive sound.”

Belt said the piece is a very meditative and effective piece.

“Cage’s idea, I guess, was about liberating sound, and liberating our perceptions of what constitutes music, and what constitutes a musical instrument,” Belt said.

Belt said he also plays in the Accidental Music Festival, which is a “festival for contemporary classical avant-garde and experimental music” that was founded in 2011.

The festival also has another event called, Marothon AMF, which is entirely focused on local artists.

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