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Dolores Catherino

Anchorage, AK      

Dolores Catherino is a PolyChromatic music composer and multi-instrumentalist. Her avant-garde compositions use audible ‘pitch-palettes’ of 106 and 72 EDO (equal divisions of the octave), performed on visionary 21st century keyboard instruments. 

Dolores is focused on exploring new musical possibilities within a polychromatic system which simplifies and unifies microtonal pitch-scale methods (which are generating many diverse terminologies and symbolic notations).

In distinction to Spectral music which deeply focuses on aspects of ‘tone color’ (timbre), Polychromatic concepts are focused on ‘pitch-color’ and ‘interval-color‘. The concept of pitch-color is also intended to simplify the exploration of aesthetic and scientific possibilities in the development of associative synesthetic awareness: learned associations and conceptual/perceptual integration of audible pitch with visual color.  

The polychromatic system creates an intuitive, pitch-color framework for creating music with micro-pitch (microtonal, xenharmonic) scale generation methods. Not only can it denote any way of dividing the octave into subset scales, but it can also allow the composer to use multiple scale types in one composition, in succession or simultaneously. The polychromatic system is able to symbolically represent, by means of a ‘pitch-color’ concept and symbology, over 100 pitches within an octave. As an expanded symbolic language, the polychromatic system has opened up immense new possibilities for exploring complex resonances, audible interactions of harmonics/phase, and new dimensions of tonality.

With an undergraduate study in music and graduate study in medicine, Dolores continues to explore and develop integrated perspectives between the sound arts and sciences.

PolyChromatic Music: https://www.polychromaticmusic.com 

Artist Profile:  https://www.rasmuson.org/49writers/dolores-catherino/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/dolomuse

Podcasts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bzoei3AN2k4&list=PLO3LJmkLQu1IPQnaQlA56ErvP6845Kesk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dolomuse/ 

Bandcamp: https://dolorescatherino.bandcamp.com/ 

SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/dolores-catherino 


Inflexion – a movement toward profound transformation. In a postmodern world, where emerging narratives replace the stability of a prior cultural meta-narrative, more voices are striving to be heard. An initial sense of dissonance and chaos slowly moves toward stability — within a more complex form of harmony.

When the language of cultural discourse becomes rigidly divisive, and words lose any stable meaning, music can transcend limitations of communication and become a unifying force, rooted in common awareness, experience and emotion.

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‘temporal parallax’ polychromatic composition

‘Temporal Parallax’ … expanding expressive dimensions in auditory spacetime.

TEMPORAL in the sense of auditory phenomena and perception.
PARALLAX – a difference in aural ‘appearance’ depending on the observer’s perceptual position (perspective shift).

Metaphorically, listen for a 3-D to 2-D aural ‘collapse’ and distinct dimensional contrast between final resolving chords.

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What is polychromatic music?

An introduction to polychromaticism as a new musical language, and an introductory comparison of 21st century electronic instruments (multidimensional polyphonic controllers) including the Tonal Plexus, Roli Seaboard, Continuum Fingerboard, and Microzone U-648, from a microtonal perspective.

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NewMusicBox Articles

Articles January 25 2018 | By Dolores Catherino
Implications of Polychromatic Music

The experience and practice of polychromatic music brings to auditory awareness new harmonic interactions and multidimensional spatial effects. Additionally, the increasing auditory perceptual discrimination developed in the practice may lead...

Articles January 18 2018 | By Dolores Catherino
Creating Music with the Polychromatic System

I needed to find an intuitive and efficient way to work with 106 notes per octave. The immensity of new musical possibilities can seem overwhelming.

Articles January 11 2018 | By Dolores Catherino
Understanding the Polychromatic System

Isolated methods of music practice are rapidly multiplying without a framework of integration and orientation for musicians and listeners to grasp. The polychromatic system is one framework of integration for...

See more of Dolores Catherino's articles on NewMusicBox.