Songs of Wars I Have Seen
Staged Concert with Words by Gertrude Stein
Christian Karlsen, musical direction
Heiner Goebbels, direction
Timo Kurkikangas and Anders Pohjola, electronics
International Contemporary Ensemble
Finnish Baroque Orchestra
In this production by Heiner Goebbels from Germany, elements from the theatre world blend seamlessly into his music. The piece which will be performed at Time of Music in Viitasaari, Songs of Wars I Have Seen, is a staged concert based on poems by Gertrude Stein, just like the subtitle suggests.
In her book Wars I Have Seen Stein remembers her life in France during World War II. Everyday observations about the troubles of life mix with great truths about the brutal war and the mindless violence. In Goebbels’s piece, the female musicians alternate between playing and reading Stein’s texts, and the scenic design reflects the early 20th century world. Goebbels’s music and Stein’s texts are full of references to the past, which is ever-present in the now. History continually repeats itself, and the great question is whether we have learned anything from the past.
The piece is performed in cooperation with the American International Contemporary Ensemble.
Duration: 1 h (no intermission)