L’Amour de loin


Check the up-to-date version of this page at www.saariaho.org/ADL-electronics.html

For general technical notes go to www.saariaho.org/Electronics-general-notes.html

For solutions to common problems go to www.saariaho.org/Electronics-common-solutions.html

General information

The electronics for this opera can be run with a Max patch that plays the pre-recorded sound files, which should be diffused on two quadraphonic spaces: one vertical space around the front of the stage, and one horizontal space around the audience.

Cues in the score should be triggered by either the pianist or an additional musician situated within the orchestra using a MIDI keyboard (or directly on the computer at the mixing desk).

Singers may be amplified but the sound should remain natural at all times; the amplification should be barely, if at all, noticeable.

In both rehearsal and performance the sound engineer/musician should read the score and adjust the relative levels of the orchestra, singers and electronics on the mixing desk, according to the given context (musical interpretation, equipment, acoustics of the performance space).


IMPORTANT: in recent MacOS versions, there is a known issue when downloading

Max standalones through browsers (such as Safari, etc.)

Before to download, one needs first to go to ‘System Preferences/Security & Confidentiality/General’

and check ‘Authorize the applications downloaded from: anywhere’.

If you do not do it, the system will display a misleading message saying that the ‘file is damaged’.

You just need to change the security parameters as described above, then restart the standalone.

Special note for MacOS Sierra: the ‘anywhere’ option is by default disabled. To enable it again:

start the application Terminal and type the following:

« sudo spctl --master-disable »

latest patch version

sound files: part 1 of 3

sound files: part 2 of 3

sound files: part 3 of 3

Technical requirements

  1. -Macintosh computer equipped with an external audio interface compatible with Max (cf: www.cycling74.com), e.g. Motu: www.motu.com, Digidesign: www.digidesign.com, RME: www.rme-audio.com

  2. -MIDI controller keyboard (8 octaves) to trigger the pre-recorded sounds from the computer

  3. -MIDI interface to connect the MIDI controller keyboard to the computer

  4. -Wireless microphones for the 3 soloists (e.g. DPA: www.dpamicrophones.com)

  5. -Mixer & octophonic diffusion (plus return monitors for the conductor, the musician triggering the cues and the singers)

Performance notes

The amount of amplification required naturally depends on the performance space, but it should never cover the acoustic sound of the instruments and voices.
The general level should be rather loud, but not painfully so.