Next week we will begin the rehearsals for music theater performance L'ALQUIMISTA in Barcelona, at the Teatro Nacional de Catalunya. Michael De Cock created and directs a theatre adaptation of the book The Abyss by Belgian writer Marguerite Yourcenar. Lutenist Jurgen De bruyn joins the stage and, together with composer Alain Franco, provides the soundtrack for the story, which is set in 16th-century Europe with a focus on the last years of the Bruges doctor and alchemist Zeno and on universal themes of humanity and freedom in turbulent times.
The premiere will take place on the 11th of May 2023. The tickets are on sale vie TNC.
De Theaterkrant describes The Mass Man as "intriguing musical meditation on mass, power and manipulation".
The full review is available on the website.
We had the pleasure of showing THE MASS MAN to a sold out audience in Concertgebouw Brugge. Prior to the performance, Muziektheater Transparant director Wouter Van Looy and artistic director of Zefiro Torna Jurgen De bruyn shared their thoughts with the audience. They explained how Nobel Prize winner Elias Canetti and his masterly book on the themes of mass and power, medieval crusader songs and film images by Wim Catrysse form the raw material for a gripping music theatre performance.
Theatre critic Johan Thielemans wrote an engaging review.
The CD TIME CRAWLS is out on the label HOMERECORDS.BE and also available on our webshop (> CD).
Zefiro Torna takes us into a timeless universe with a reinterpretation of the 17th century broken consort music. Melodies intuitively created by flute player Jowan Merckx received a new arrangement for flute, violin, viola da gamba, violone, harp and lute by composers Marnix De Cat and Martin Valcke. The new written music bears traces of baroque and traditional music from all over Europe. The music, which is sometime melancholic, sometimes nimble and festive, fascinates by its ingeniously crafted texture and invites to dance.
This autumn, the alchemistic laboratory BALSAM with Laika, Theatre of the Senses will be on tour again. After two series of performances at the Boulevard Festival in Den Bosch and Cultura Nova in Heerlen in August, the team is ready for it! Prepare yourself for a bewitching ritual in which music, scents and flavours immerse you in the shimmering world of alchemy. Besides the Greenwich+Docks International Festival in London and a tour to Portugal and France, BALSAM also passes by a number of Belgian venues.
--> Take a look in the agenda for all dates
Taking J.S. Bach’s Musikalisches Opfer as a starting point, ZEFIRO TORNA, ENSEMBLE VARIANCES (FR) and visual artist Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven (AMVK) join forces in an exceptional program around the symbol of the retrograde. Underneath a purely technical charm seems to lie hidden a symbolic purpose. Maybe it is an attempt to control the relentlessly ongoing concept of time? Is it the expression of a negative world view: a waning society in full regression? Or could it be a magical intervention: is it actually possible to rewind an event and undo it by chanting or playing backwards? Or can we, this way, connect the end with the beginning, the alpha with the omega?
Throughout music history, musical puzzles and chanting backwards have been a returning particularity. Emblematic scores in the shape of a lobster carrying the world on its back (Cancer Cancrizans), circular compositions that depict the circle of life or music relating to the symbol of the labyrinth or of self-sacrifice form the common thread through the BACHC®AB programme. The audience travels from the 14th-century song En la maison Dedalus or the 15th-century Tout par compas suy composés, to the ritual dances of the 20th and 21st centuries with George Crumb and Thierry Pécou, whose Miraris Mundum received its world premiere. Heinz Holliger explores the physical limits of the individual performer while Louis Andriessen’s Inanna’s Descent recounts the journey of the mythological Sumerian goddess to the underworld. The enigmatic canons from Bach’s Musikalisches Opfer connect old and new.
A video artwork by Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven reinforces the ritualistic character of this concert.
Jurgen De bruyn concept, musical direction
Dr. Prof. Katelijne Schiltz musicological research
Anne-mie Van Kerckhoven visual art
Gert Aertsen video technique
Ensemble Variances (FR)
In coproduction with DE SINGEL, Antwerp and with the support of The Flemish Community and the Belgian Federal Government’s Tax Shelter
Klassiek Centraal 27.09.2022
ACH, Johann Sebastian (1685-1750) – Canon a 2 cancrizans
NONYME (14thC) – En la Maison Dedalus
ANDRIESSEN, Louis (1939-2021) – Slow Birthday
BACH, Johann Sebastian – Canon a 2 violini in unisono
PÉCOU, Thierry (°1965) – Danse en Cercle
RUMB, George (1929-2022) – Ancient Voices of Children: ‘Dances of the
ancient Earth’ / III. De dónde vienes, amor mi niño ‘Dance of the
sacred life-cycle’ / IV. Todas las tardes en Granada / Ghost Dance
BACH, Johann Sebastian – Canon a 2 per motum contrarium
OLLIGER, Heinz (°1939) – Studie über Mehrklänge
BACH, Johann Sebastian – Canon a 2 per augmentationem, contrario motu
ORDIER, Baude (1380-1440) – Tout par compas suy composés
BACH, Johann Sebastian – Canon a 2 per tonos
ETROGRADE / PÉCOU, Thierry – Miraris Mundum –
Esope reste ici et se repose (creation 2020)
NDRIESSEN, Louis – Inanna’s Descent
ACH, Johann Sebastian – Ricercar a 6