Fundevogel [Foundling-Bird] was planned as a series of orchestal piece with silent theatre. The music is based on short excerpts from interviews with child soldiers on the one hand and the Grimms' tale of the foundling-bird on the other. Finding no stage, only two instrumental pieves were ever realized: Berührung [Touch] and No Living Thing.

Berührung [Touch] is based on the following sentence from the fairy tale: “Diese zwey Kinder haben sich so lieb wenn eins das andere nicht sieht so sind sie betrübt.” [Those two children hold each other so dear it grieves them when one does not see the other.] And No Living Thing works on the these sentences from an interview with a sixteen-year-old child soldier: “They were the enemy, no matter if they were civilians or not. Sometimes there were still people inside when we set fire to them. It could be anyone: children, women, men - everyone. Even a rat would not survive in those moments. We killed anythinng living: sheep, goats - evertything. The operations were called: no living thing. When my boys suffered defeat, I executed such an operation as punishment.“

The music does not aim to immediately “translate“ these texts or, respectively, what the say. I rather wanted to write music which “examines“ particular aspects of what is being said and as such also “embodies“ it (but as a musical body, which turns to the varied events, and also remains).

About Berührung [Touch], what interested me was the atmosphere of an electrified distance, pervaded by the currents of longing. I tried to write music to the succinct and as such unreachable sentence from the fairy tale that can reflect something of the paradox of love, of the touch at the distance of grievance.

The situtation of total annihilation, referred to as No Living Thing-operation, is examined and embodied by the music from the point of view of an “afterwards“: as though standing at the place where the village had been one could still hear the cracking of the burnt wood. A scream runs through the piece, stretched so that it is only partly perceivable as a scream, as well as a sound that remains same to itself.

Ensemble Atelier Neue Musik Bremen. Direction Christian Hommel

Berührung [Touch]

No Living Thing