Sat, Aug 24


Lucerne Culture and Congress Centre


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Time & Location

Aug 24, 2019, 9:00 PM

Lucerne Culture and Congress Centre, Europaplatz 1, 6005 Luzern, Switzerland

About the Event

Thomas Kessler (*1937) Utopia III for large orchestra and multiple live electronics  … said the shotgun to the head for slammer, slam chorus, and orchestra  

Introduction to Utopia III with Thomas Kessler at the beginning of the concert (in German)

In his major orchestral piece Utopia III from 2016, Thomas Kessler subverts the usual balance of power. He makes do without having a sound engineer in charge who controls everything but instead hands responsibility for the live electronic modulation directly over to the musicians, all of whom he equips with iPads, microphones, and loudspeakers. The result is an “unprecedented total sound.” Utopia III is Kessler’s third work in which he examines this new orchestral concept, and here he extends it to spatial music: the musicians are distributed in five groups throughout the concert hall. Kessler began his collaboration with the American slam poet Saul Williams in 2003 with the piece … said the shotgun to the head: “Saul narrated by memory about half of the 30-minute text in his unmistakable style on a recording device. I derived almost the entire composition from the speech melody and rhythm of his voice, some of which I analyzed with the help of computer programs,” says Kessler. Selected Swiss slam poets will join together to form a chorus that will assist Saul Williams.

With the friendly support of Pro Helvetia, Swiss Arts Council

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