Space beyond Space

Suite for Orchestra, Choir and Percussion in 8 movements

It is exciting to go on a musical quest, expressing the most mysterious phenomenon of life – Space! Space is one of the most mysterious and fascinating phenomena existing. Space has stimulated the curiosity of humans from the very beginning.
The most advanced scientists as well as ancient philosophers have been researching the phenomenon of space. Newest science assumes that space is both – extremely full and unimaginably tense – while at the same time it appears completely empty. What a mystery!

The key for composing such a piece is the surrender to a state of „not knowing“ solely relying on the trust, that inspiration will come in the right moment. That means: just opening up space for things to unfold and surrender to absolute presence in complete emptiness.

Space beyond Space comes with a philosophical message. Because both composers are rooted in western culture, Latin turned out to be the obvious choice for a language to convey the message. Since traditional texts dedicated to the phenomenon of space don´t exist in Latin, the words which came out of the composition process needed to be translated. With the help of Dr. Smolak, one of the best philologists available worldwide, the Latin paradigms of this composition have been crafted.

„Ubi nihil – ibi omnia“! This statement carries such deep meaning, that it becomes a Latin „Koan“ – something that cannot be grasped by the logic mind alone but eventually needs to include other layers of recognition to access a deeper understanding of space – the only phenomenon, that connects everything with everything.

Prologue

Musically the prologue intends to create the atmosphere that something important is to be revealed. It gradually builds a rhythmic backdrop to present the first statement. “Ubi nihil, Ibi omnia” is recited first, for everyone to clearly understand the message: „where there is nothing there is everything“. This statement correlates with the ancient „heart sutra“, which starts like this: …“Form does not differ from emptiness; emptiness does not differ from form. Form itself is emptiness; emptiness itself is form.“ It also points to the finding of modern science. The prologue directly leads to the second movement.

Ubi Nihil

To access the deeper meaning of this condensed information, the second movement leads the audience through a polytonal „birthing process“ with a massive intensity of sound and rhythm input, that is intended to crack open the mind for venturing out to new horizons.

Revolving Galaxies

The Big Bang sends out its different movements through the musical universe. Inner galaxies, rhythmic galaxies and sound galaxies - all blend together at this point. Various polyrhythmic layers and complex cycles interact sometimes in a very dynamic manner, sometimes in contrast withdrawing into a more static mood. „Revolving galaxies“ ends in a culmination that calls the drums to take centerstage.

Power of Rhythm

Every composition of the „Space Project“ has movements in which the art of playing drums in a virtuosic manner is integrated into the composition. Here, Tupac Mantilla und Reinhard Flatischler are interacting with the whole orchestra that turns now into a mighty rhythm generator as well.

Beyond Space

Everything so far was a preparation to dive into the actual meditation of this mysterious phenomenon space. It starts with a portal in which quite unusual sounds call the listener into a direct participation of contemplating space. Beyond space consists of a metamorphosis of three rhythms: starting with a twelve beat cycle, the rhythms evolve into an eleven beat cycle, recited by the choir in multiple voice layers and ending up in a mysterious layering of a seven and a six beat cycle. When their elements are „singled out“ - which is a composition technique of the Waves Project - the audience feels a coherence but cannot grasp how everything is interconnected. An atmosphere of wondering, awe and introspection opens up.

Spatium Omnia Tu

Never before has there been a coherent polyrhythmic choir in the history of classical and avant-garde music. The polyrhythm of three and four create an unstoppable drive, which is different from groove, just based on one pulsation alone. This movement conveys the following messages, sung by the choir:

„Spatium, omnia tu, Omnia nosti, Omnia saecula!
Spatium, omnia tu, Omnia iungis, Omnia omnibus!
Tu narra de terra, Narra de nobis Narra caelestibus!“

translates into:
„Space, you know everything, really everything, all ages
Space, you connect everything, everything with everything
You, tell us about the earth, tell us about us, tell us about the heavenly beings.“

„Tu es via clara, Tu es noster angelus,
Testare hanc vitam, Narra mundo nostram musicam!
Tu es via clara nostra, Tu es noster vere unus angelus!
Testare hanc vitam, Nostram musicam!“

translates into:
„You are the shining path, you are our messenger
bear witness to this life on earth, recount our music to the universe
you are our shining path, you are our one true messenger indeed
bear witness to this life and to our music.“

Contemplation

The title already suggests that this is a moment of contemplation and resting point before the final movement. Completely new sound combinations of ancient temple bells with low frequency and high frequency clusters played by the orchestra provoke deep listening and introspection before finally returning to the initial statement: „Ubi Nihil - Ibi Omnia“

Ubi Nihil Return

It is impossible to escape space and therefore it is a consequent move that „Space beyond Space“ returns to Ubi Nihil in the end. However, no one ever returns to the same place or situation in such a journey. This times all the elements from the beginning have changed into a hymn of uplifting joy, vigor and courage. The last words sung by the choir in a very still a capella mode remind that even in the most dramatic situation there is always emptiness and space.

The „Space beyond Space“ performance is part of the „Beethoven and beyond“ project that will also perform Beethoven´s Mass in C.

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