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Chris Mann sees himself as a compositional linguist. Born 1949 in Melbourne, he has for some time been one of the most influential and internationally known Australian artists. He studied linguistics and speech philosophy and, in 1977, coordinated an UNESCO research project in Paris on the acoustic grammar of natural languages. As a sound poet and radio artist, his primary field of interest is spoken Australian English, including slang. His works for voice are based on complex texts, are musically freely composed and play with jokes and humor. Himself a frequent guest as a solo performer on numerous festivals, Chris Mann will provide the moderation on all four days of “open systems 2005” and, in doing so, will bring a whole new quality to the moderator’s function of being an intermediary between the artists and audience. The idea to invite Chris Mann as the “Festival Emcee” for “open systems 2005” came about in October 2004 on the “Sounds Like Now Festival” in New York, where Karl-Heinz Blomann had the opportunity to convince himself in person of Chris’ remarkable abilities as a conferencier.

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