mustERkennung … stuff about patterns and their recognition


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I love Berlin Atonal, this festival is one of my annual fixtures and I’m already looking forward the announcement of next years edition. I love to just be there, got blasted by the low frequencies, the harsh noises, the hugeness of the venue and the big, clear video projections. There are some critiques about the, in this sense, monotonous schedule (The Quietus). But this year the stage was open for more variations, for more arty acts. There was this piece by Stockhausen played on a quadrophonic system. There were Pyur and Pan Daijing, the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and Puce Mary.

So, with some delight I received the announcement that Berlin Atonal wants to co-operate with the Deutsche Symphonie Orchester Berlin. Called parallax.

This event happened Friday, 29th September, of course at Kraftwerk Berlin. The audience was very different from the common atonal visitor. The place the same, some light installations, but no video projection. The stage was set up in a total different way: It now offers place for a full orchestra.

Lights off, and silent. Then a harp started playing, somewhere near the ceiling, a 10 minute piece of some beauty. The running order of this evening was as follows:

The most charming feedback from the audience was for the 17 minutes violin concert playing Bach.

And that’s where the evening is not working for me. It was mentioned that classical music and electronics shall challenge the industrial architecture of Kraftwerk. There was no such challenge and no reception in this way. The lights where lit the whole evening. As always, acoustic was stunning and I liked to have the space played at a more normal volume. But this is not what this space is made for (in my opinion). So many harmonics, no darkness, no harshness.

For me, and I may overreact a litte, the evening showed, or ought show, that classical instrumentation is the real music, and those electronic music artist are just knob fiddlers. This is what I read from the audience, there was applause and chants of “Bravo!” for the classical, acoustic parts, and not much feedback for Pyur or Jabanasam. And also in the one and only real cooperation between the orchestra and Moritz von Oswald… He only produced some soundscapes where to violins and real drums and trumpets played upon.

I learned something. And this is the role of the conductor (Robin Ticciati). It seems that he is for the orchestra what is the master clock to synth system. For the 6 minutes piece “The unanswered question” by Charles Ives the musicians stand spread around the main hall. And for the first time I understood what a conductor is doing. Liked it 🙂

It was a nice evening, full of great music at an beloved venue, but with some after taste.


Written by Rayk Fenske

October 3, 2017 at 3:35 pm

Posted in music

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