This evening compares and contrasts two experiments in musical and cultural translation. Both take traditions of innovation that are lesser known, forgotten, or offshore from a present-day Western perspective and intertwine them with contemporary, and perhaps more familiar, music technologies. One focuses on the classical Middle Eastern canon; the other on the time-tested European avant-garde and its colourful instrumentarium.
Jerusalem In My Heart is a live audiovisual performance project with Lebanese-born Canadian producer and musician Radwan Ghazi Moumneh and filmmaker Charles André Coderre at its core. A fixture of the Montreal independent music community from his early days, Moumneh is also active in the Beirut and Lebanese experimental music scenes, bringing influences from both into Jerusalem in My Heart. Through the project, which takes its name from a civil-war period album by the beloved Lebanese singer, Fairouz, Moumneh attempts to forge a modern experimental Arabic music that weds evocative singing in classical Arabic modes to electronic compositions. Together with Coderre’s handmade visuals using analogue 16mm film and slide projectors over a multiple screens, the artists create an immersive sonic and visual live experience.
Joining Jerusalem in my Heart are gamut inc., a Berlin-based ensemble whose navigation of unfamiliar territory takes the form of a kind of sonic archaeology; they uncover pre-modern music-making technologies and concepts that embody a similar conceptual or experimental rigor as the contemporary avant-garde, and combine them with recent technology to build stunning electroacoustic instruments bridging the very old and the very new. For their CTM 2016 appearance, gamut inc present some of their newest machines — including a noise generator built of multiplied cabasas, pitch-shifting timpani with multiple solenoid beaters and a miniature carillon, and a glockenspiel-like instrument in which metal bars are hit on different positions by computer-controlled solenoids — for the first time in Berlin. In addition to their HAU concert, gamut inc introduce into their instruments and the underlying methodology in a presentation within the CTM 2016 MusicMakers Hacklab.
Supported by the Embassy of Canada and the Québec Delegation of Berlin.
The Berlin-based gamut inc is an interdisciplinary ensemble founded in 2011 by computer musician and architect Marion Wörle and experimental composer Maciej Sledziecki. The ensemble is conceived around the construction of pre-modern instruments and the control of these instruments by recent technologies, resulting in an aesthetic that bridges the very old and the very new.
Jerusalem in my Heart is Montreal-based producer and musician Radwan Ghazi Moumneh's Arabic-music project. Live, he partners with filmmaker Charles-André Coderre, who projects analogue 16mm film and 35mm slides onto multiple site-specific screens.