Exquisite Distance (2021)

A collectively composed work featuring graphic score, the use of pre-recorded videos, and improvisation

This collaborative work was selected to perform during the Music Since 1900 International Conference, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, 2022.



The session consists of two hybrid realisations of Exquisite Distance separated by a presentation of its concepts and work process. The core idea of the composition is the use of a collaborative graphic score, similar to the ‘Exquisite Corpse’ method previously explored in Surrealism and the works of John Cage. Each group member composed sections of a graphic score which were passed on to the others. The next composer received some information from the previous composer and would continue the process, then pass it to the next until the work was completed. The realisations of the piece comprise combinations of pre-recorded video and on-site performers. The performances showcased the similarities and variations created when interpreting indeterminate scoring and also influences of pre-recorded material on live interpretations of the piece.


The following score was created to by me, Jerry Zhuo:




The Hooting Cow Collective is a multinational group of musicians founded in 2017 at Cardiff University. Shared interests in graphic notation, open scores, text scores, and improvisation brought us together as their unlimited interpretations transcend cultural boundaries and diverse musical backgrounds. We are currently all in different corners of the world, but this does not prevent us from connecting, virtually, to exchange our ideas and discuss various aspects of new music.