C0 note (16,35 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

D0 note (18.35 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

C0 note (16,35 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

F0 note (21.83 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

G0 note (24.50 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

A0 note (27.50 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

Hall, Alec: 28 Hours 



Basic information

  • Title: 
    28 Hours
  • Duration (in minutes): 
  • Year of composition: 
  • First performance (year): 
  • First performance (venue): 
    New York, NY
  • First performance (performers): 
    JACK Quartet
  • Keywords: 
  • Solo Voice(s)/Instrument(s): no


  • Program notes: 

    Inspired by the Last Words Project of Iranian-American artist Shirin Barghi, I took
    erasure as a metaphoric starting point for 28 Hours. Using the last known words from
    victims of police murder— most famously Eric Garner’s “I can’t breathe”, for example—
    I searched through online lyric databases, looking for places in songs where these words
    would show up. I then took these moments in each respective song and subjected them to
    a variety of processes analogous to the erasure of the original source; in one instance, the
    technique of Alvin Lucier’s I am sitting in a room, where I let the song fragment simply
    fade out into the natural resonances of the room. In another section of the piece, I played
    a different excerpt over computer speakers into my cell phone, and then played it back
    into the computer, repeating the process nine times, until there was almost nothing left of
    the original source except sinuous and ghostly high tones.
    I have consciously used the metaphor of erasure in this piece not only as the subject, but
    also as an actual compositional tool. In so doing, I wanted 28 Hours to be a memorial
    space, where the very mechanisms of American racism could be inverted; the act of
    erasing becomes a process of remembrance, the commemoration of stolen lives.




Total number of musicians: 
Musicians1st player2nd player



Content posted to the ISCM website reflects the viewpoint of individual submitters; its appearance herein does not imply official endorsement by the ISCM, its Executive Committee, or the Delegates to its General Assembly.