The Rite of Spring
From deafening noise to classical music: an AUDI press shop is transformed into a concert hall. For the anniversary concert of the AUDI Summer Concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), Kent Nagano commissions us to develop a very special "Rite of Spring“.
Stravinsky's ballet describes archaic scenes of violence, sex and death - back and forth between two hostile tribes. A calculated scandal at the world premiere. Since then, there have been epochal dances. We don't have dancers, we just have a big projection screen.
So we had to summarize the dynamics that otherwise arise from the contrast of the two groups of dancers in one picture. For each episode we created a three-dimensional scene reflecting the different character of the music. These were set in motion by interactive technology: firstly by a real-time analysis of the music played, secondly by the movements of the conductor Kent Nagano. In combination they brought the scenes to life. The music became the fuel for the staging. Nothing happened during breaks in the game.
The entire room became part of the staging: the striking colors of the individual scenes deliberately reached into the room. The action was not be limited to the projection screen nor the stage. The audience became part of this archaic musical confrontation.
The music emerges like a little seedling. A plant-like structure gradually becomes visible on the canvas from the shadow, and with increasing activity of the orchestra it begins to stretch and grow its tentacles.
A martial showdown. March and saber rattling as in a military parade. The natural forms of mystical impulsiveness that have prevailed up to now are suddenly replaced by cold metal blocks. They are a sign of human striving for power. They roll their way in jerky motions. The two parties are clearly separated, but visually indistinguishable. There’s no good against evil here.
In a way, dance is a parallel counter-project to the march of the rival tribes. Two clouds of fire, consisting of many small individual parts, begin to entwine, penetrate and release each other repeatedly. This swarm behavior is controlled solely by the orchestra.
Exhaustion. A moment of breathlessness. After the orgiastic "Dance of the Earth" we radically separate the two parts of the composition, and for a long moment the conductor Kent Nagano stops the world. The light suddenly turns into the audience, away from the projection. The hall ceiling begins to glow. What next?
The character of the visualization changes in the second part. Suddenly the conductor becomes visible. His silhouette shifts to the center of the picture. His movements change the scene over and over again - this is more than a mere technical gimmick. The whirling of the snow, for example, describes a very special form of dance.
Artistically, a decisive shift in emphasis takes place. It is not without irony that the conductor is brought to the centre - the "glorification of the chosen" can also be read as a commentary on the classical music business with its focus on stars.
The fact that this character sacrifices himself in the finale and dissolves in a rain of fire is only a logical consequence.
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