María Elena Durazo

María Elena Durazo

General Vice President, UNITE HERE

Biography

María Elena Durazo was elected to serve as Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, on May 15, 2006. Before leading the Federation, Maria Elena was elected President of the hotel workers union UNITE-HERE, Local 11, and built it into one of the most active unions in Los Angeles County. Her hard work led her to become the first Latina elected to the Executive Board of HERE International Union in 1996 and eventually, in 2004, she became Executive Vice President of UNITE-HERE International.Currently she serves as Chair of the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s appointee to the Los Angeles Economy and Jobs Committee, Board of Directors for LA Inc., the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau and the California League of Conservation Voters. Maria Elena is a graduate of St. Mary’s College in Moraga and earned a law degree from the People’s College of Law in 1985. She resides in Los Angeles.

Durazo was previously a member of Think Long California.


composed by Arswain
machine learning consultation by Anna Tskhovrebov
commissioned by the Berggruen Institute
premiered at the Bradbury Building
downtown Los Angeles
april 22, 2022

Human perception of what sounds “beautiful” is necessarily biased and exclusive. If we are to truly expand our hearing apparatus, and thus our notion of beauty, we must not only shed preconceived sonic associations but also invite creative participation from beings non-human and non-living. We must also begin to cede creative control away from ourselves and toward such beings by encouraging them to exercise their own standards of beauty and collaborate with each other.

Movement I: Alarm Call
‘Alarm Call’ is a long-form composition and sound collage that juxtaposes, combines, and manipulates alarm calls from various human, non-human, and non-living beings. Evolutionary biologists understand the alarm call to be an altruistic behavior between species, who, by warning others of danger, place themselves by instinct in a broader system of belonging. The piece poses the question: how might we hear better to broaden and enhance our sense of belonging in the universe? Might we behave more altruistically if we better heed the calls of – and call out to – non-human beings?

Using granular synthesis, biofeedback, and algorithmic modulation, I fold the human alarm call – the siren – into non-human alarm calls, generating novel “inter-being” sonic collaborations with increasing sophistication and complexity. 

Movement II: A.I.-Truism
A synthesizer piece co-written with an AI in the style of Vangelis’s Blade Runner score, to pay homage to the space of the Bradbury Building.

Movement III: Alarmism
A machine learning model “learns” A.I.Truism and recreates Alarm Call, generating an original fusion of the two.

Movement IV: A.I. Call
A machine learning model “learns” Alarm Call and recreates A.I.Truism, generating an original fusion of the two.


RAVE (IRCAM 2021) https://github.com/acids-ircam/RAVE