AMARANTHINE | Petra Strahovnik

AMARANTHINE | Petra Strahovnik
Catalogue 71UG
Format DL, stereo, binaural, video
Release Date December 2021
Availability In Stock
€15.00

This digital release includes a film and an audio album: we recommend to use headphones and enjoy the binaural version of both film and album. Both are also available in stereo.

  • Petra Strahovnik - composer
  • Saskia Lankhoorn - piano
  • Micha de Kanter - sound, electronics
  • Vida Habjanic - video

Amaranthine (excerpts)

SOUNDS OF THE YOUNG AVANT-GARDE VOL. 04. Gaudeamus and the independent label Unsounds are indispensable actors in the avant-garde and new music field, operating internationally from their common base in the Netherlands. With the Sounds of the Young Avant-Garde Collection, they collaborate to present some of the most forward moving sounds in contemporary music, as they are created today by young and mid-career makers. The works are original commissions by Gaudeamus and are selected, produced and released by Unsounds. This joint venture secures a new lease of life for these works apart from and beyond the live music stages, ensuring the most thrilling music of our day and age is preserved as veritable future classics.

Amaranthine: (adj.) Eternally beautiful and unfading; everlasting, undying, immortal.

In Petra Strahovnik's view our daily lives are a constant stream of ‘mental rapes’. Be it by the media, advertising, politics, we are subjected to myriads of micro-manipulations. Pleasure, pain or happiness – society will tell us what to think and feel at any time.

Amaranthine, a composition for piano and electronics was written specially for Dutch pianist Saskia Lankhoorn. With this piece Strahovnik wanted to create a sonic haven far removed from pre-concieved experiences. The piano is prepared with extremely powerful rare-earth magnets, capable of attracting as much as a thousand times their own weight. The pianist brings the little magnets slowly towards the string, moves them back and forth or holds them just above the string. It causes the tone to bend, and a very subtle ‘beating’ is created in the sound. Electronics are performed live by Micha de Kanter, who expands the sound beyond the acoustic realm with great sensibility. Amaranthine is an otherwordly piece, intense both for the performers and the audience.

For this release we have chosen the video medium in order to bring the immersive experience to the listener beyond the live performance. The piece was filmed and recorded within the magnificent concert hall of Villa Concordia in Bamberg. Vida Habjanic's artful camera comes very close to the performer and inside the grand piano, offering unique insights. As Lankhoorn delivers a real tour de force in intensity and restraint, we find ourselves in a pristine sound world that fulfills the promise of Strahovnik's ambitious title.

TRAILER

 

INTERVIEW OF THE ARTISTS AT VILLA CONCORDIA, BAMBERG

 

 

Saskia Lankhoorn performing Amaranthine at Villa Concordia
Saskia Lankhoorn performing 'Amaranthine' at Villa Concordia
Petra Strahovnik at Villa Concordia
Petra Strahovnik at Villa Concordia
Saskia Lankhoorn, Petra Strahovnik, Micha de Kanter filming of the interview
Saskia Lankhoorn, Petra Strahovnik, Micha de Kanter filming of the interview. All video stills: Vida Habjanic.

 

BIOGRAPHIES

Petra Strahovnik, composer

Petra is an innovative composer, with a depth of musical knowledge and experiences that enable her to achieve great intellectual and emotional impact. Her music is explicitly focused on the here and now;

As a researcher of sound, Petra Strahovnik looks for sounds, structures and forms that defy conventional notions of music and transcend the traditional dichotomy of thought and emotion, body and mind in order to ‘make the mind tremble’, as she puts it herself. At the centre of her work and research are the expressive power of music and the conviction that it alone can move, affect and unsettle a person in their entirety. Her instrumental compositions resemble immersive soundscapes that do not exhibit the specific characteristics of individual instruments but instead generate a total sound...

Berlin Art Prize for Music jury statement.

Saskia Lankhoorn, piano

Dutch pianist Saskia Lankhoorn is an active soloist and chamber musician in the contemporary music scene. Her critically acclaimed solo concerts combine new art music with a strong performance and sound concept, and strive to immerse the audience in a new sound world. Saskia is an active participant in the contemporary music scene in the Netherland with roles in leading ensembles and as a curator of ground breaking programs for Gaudeamus and Dag in de Branding. Her work has received acclaim at home and abroad.

Micha de Kanter, electronics and sound design

Micha de Kanter is an independent recording engineer active in the contemporary, jazz and improvised music fields. He is a real creative contributor to complex works, performing live electronics alongside the most talented soloists and ensembles. Micha has worked wih Unsounds on many albums in the past and we are delighted to showcase his work here as a performer as well as sound engineer.

Vida Habjanic, video

A director of photography, photographer and actress, Vida has a passion for anything that involves holding a camera, or teaching others to do it.

FILM CREDITS

  • Director: Vida Habjanic
  • Performer: Saskia Lankhoorn
  • Composer: Petra Strahovnik
  • Sound design and sound recording: Micha de Kanter
  • Assistant on set: Alen Hoheger
  • Adviser: Isabelle Vigier
  • Production: Gaudeamus / Unsounds records

Filmed at Internationales Künsterhaus Villa Concordia Bamberg, Germany.

Amaranthine by Petra Strahovnik was written for Saskia Lankhoorn with the support of Gaudeamus and Festival Dag in de Branding.

This film is an initiative of Gaudeamus and Unsounds records, made with support from Internationales Künsterhaus Villa Concordia, and with funding from the Province of Utrecht and the City of Utrecht. 

Music copyright: Petra Strahovnik 2018
Film copyright: Vida Habjanic 2021

Unsounds | Gaudeamus | Villa Concordia

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