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Koerikoeloem – Miranda Driessen

open air, windharps, multiple voices

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In an open field stands a circle of columns in the form of eight wind harps. As you come closer, the soft, rarefied sounds become audible. The singing columns form a chapel of sound. A gradual transition from the spoken word to recitations, Sprechgesang and ultimately sung text continues in an increasingly complex polyphony, which is eventually absorbed by the sound of the wind harps.

Koerikoeloem is a music theatre production created by Miranda Driessen, based on the prose poem of the same name by Tjitske Jansen. A multidisciplinary work for eight solo voices, sho (a Japanese wind instrument), a recorder trio and an acoustic installation consisting of eight wind harps.

Photo © Kees van de Veen

Tjitske Jansen’s text consists of a succession of anecdotes drawn from extremely personal experience. In a time when everyone posts their cares and woes on Facebook and other social media on an almost daily basis, this may not seem so unusual, but here it’s a different matter: due to the sheer number of stories, an image is gradually created of an existence in which every attempt to get a grip on life seems an almost hopeless task. And yet there is no mention of any indictment, accusation or need for retribution. She pilots us through her verses in clear language, often with a particularly humorous touch, without ever becoming woolly or melodramatic, and with a compassionate detachment.

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Miranda Driessen - composition
Tjitske Jansen - text

Asko Kamerkoor
Trio Axolot - recorders
Naomi Sato - sho