Live Electronics & Poetry with Paul Brody
Paul Brody’s sound installation lands somewhere between a recorded concert and a poetry reading, what he calls “musical translations” of poems and short prose pieces. Underpinning the words are compositions based on samples from symphonies and instruments taped live in a studio, creating a series of playfully eclectic mini-musical-poetic adventures.
While one poet might inspire a funky groove created from recordings of twisting tin cans, footsteps, and a drumbeat ripped from an old Deutsche Gramphon LP, another writer’s voice might conjure an electro-symphonic collage. The foundation is the writers reading their works, but Brody at times cuts out consonants, stretches vowels, and creates rhythmic patterns from fricatives to paint a heretofore unexplored musical landscape.
The idea of translating a poem from its sonic qualities isn’t new. Two poets in this installation, Uljana Wolf and Christian Hawley, have worked with homophonic translation—renderings of poems based on their sonic qualities rather than the meaning of the words.
The show features stories dedicated to place, to neighborhood, in the first leg of Brody’s four-part cycle LOVE&DEMOCRACY, notions that are inextricably intertwined. Without a love of place and neighbors, democracy is impossible. And without treating each other fairly—democratically—there can be no real love. As the German jurist and politician Lore Maria Peschel-Gutzei says, “Democracy is the most difficult form of government. One must care enough to struggle and respect and negotiate.” The same could be said for love.
The installation includes works from Uljana Wolf, Christian Hawkey, Gregor Dotzauer, Tom Drury, Angélica Freitas, Gregor Hens, Ivana Sajko, Tom Bresemann, Donna Stonecipher, and Michael Krüger as well as readings from Marina Frenk and Kiki Sauer.
The sound installation combines texts in German and English.
(c) Dirk Hasskarl
Paul Brody was born in the USA, California, and received his training as a musician at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. Brody works regularly as a sound artist, composer and trumpeter at the Théâtre de Vidy in Lausanne, the Munich Kammerspiele, the Berlin Schaubühne, the MC93 Paris, the New York Harlem Opera and the Vienna Burgtheater, among others. A close collaboration connects him with the music producer John Zorn. His album „Hinter allen Worten“, which features artists such as Clueso, Meret Becker or Jelena Kulijic, was on the best list of the Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik. Paul Brody was nominated for the Europe Broadcasting Festival and the International Feature Festival Vienna for his work as a sound artist. His sound art works have been heard on WDR, Deutschlandradio, the Jewish Museum Berlin, MuseumsQuartier Vienna, and Transmediale Berlin. He is currently writing an opera for the Opéra National de Lorraine in Nancy. A close collaboration connects him with the theater directors David Marton and Hans-Werner Kroesinger.
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