Monday, 13 April 2009

a.rawlings and Isabeella Beumer at Logos (2nd April)

It was a fantastic concert. I'm still not really up for reviewing - conversations with angela, Jelle, Maja, Claire make more sense to me - but here are some pictures etc.

angela's performance began with a short reading from Wide Slumber, which she dedicated to Claire. High up at the back, behind the camera, Claire's jaw dropped so far I thought I might have to crawl under the seats to retrieve it.

She followed it with her new Cochlea manuscript - with the line 'Robots in Ghent' there could be no better place to perform it - and an excerpt from Environment Canada. I want to hear them again, especially the permutating, perhaps spiralling, sound patterns in Cochlea.

I already posted a short clip of her improvisation with Maja a while ago, but here it is again to save you having to look for the older post:

Looking at it now, it is spooky how closely matched they were (that's angela on the left there and Maja on the right, for anyone getting confused). I hope the film gives an idea of how awesome it was. The performance was based on a tarot reading: a three-card spread (i.e. past, present, future) using only the major arcana. And they did shuffle the pack; it was a genuine improvisation. The film shows the first two cards, can you guess them? Go on. Maja told me the answers afterwards; I guessed the second one but not the first.

Isabeella Beumer's performance made an impressive contrast: the generation difference and a solo, virtuoso performance of relatively fixed pieces rather than a collaborative improvisation. Beumer reminded me of Meredith Monk in certain ways: her incredible range and virtuosity, and her fascination with voice techniques from other parts of the world. There were moments when she had me completely mesmerised, and predictably enough those were the parts where I lacked the wherewithal to press down the camera button. So the films aren't the best bits of the performance, but I have two excerpts from near the beginning:

... and a little piece of the encore. The entire performance was unaccompanied voice: there's no backing tape or instrumental accompaniment apart from the little percussion instrument you can see in the second clip.

1 comment:

  1. i wish i wasnt so busy with my deadlines, i am absolutley desperate to watch the clips!
    and yes, i think i left part of my jaw in belgium, that dedication was possibly one of the coolest things anyone has ever done for me EVER- after of course having someone let me come and stay with them for a week to do work experience, introduce me to all their amazing friends and help with an amazing exhibition... helen! ;)

    hope you are all well, i cant wait to watch the clips x