Rebecca Saunders - dust (2017/18)
für percussion solo
Dirk Rothbrust, percussion
Janet Sinica, video/editing
Stephan Schmidt, recording producer/editing
Live recording, July 2020
Studio of Ensemble Musikfabrik, Cologne
Programme Note by Rebecca Saunders
dust / dʌst / n.: a fine, dry powder of tiny particles of waste matter or earth.
A film of dust is a like a membrane, covering or layering the body or thing, on the ground, on surfaces or carried in the air. The dust of the earth is a place of burial.
Dust within a room is composed mostly of dead skin, a powder of mortal remains.
"...not a sound only the old breath and the leaves turning and then suddenly this dust whole place suddenly full of dust when you opened your eyes from floor to ceiling nothing only dust and not a sound only what was it it said....come and gone in no time gone in no time." That Time, Samuel Beckett
"...all these words, all these strangers, this dust of words, with no ground for their settling, no sky for their dispersing, coming together to say, fleeing one another to say, that I am they, all of them, those things that merge, those that part, those that never meet, and nothing else, yes, something else,....a wordless thing in an empty space..." The Unnameable, Samuel Beckett
Inside, withheld, unbreathed,
Souffle, vapour, ghost,
hauch and dust.
Absent, silent, void
Either, neither, sole,
dust is a solo for two, each their own.
An homage to Christian Dierstein and Dirk Rotbrust for the (many) wonderful sound sessions over the years.
Each performer creates their own version, defined by their own instruments and the chosen juxtaposition of up to eight separately composed modules.
The fallible physical body behind the sound, feeling the weight of sound, exploring the essence of a timbre, seeking the grit and noise within. Surface, weight and touch are the essence of musical performance: the weight of a heavy beater resounding on the drum skin; the bow drawing the sound out of silence; the differentiation of touch pressing the brushes into the drum skin; the expansion of the muscles between the shoulder blades; the player ́s in-breath preceding the played tone...
RS, Berlin 1st April 2018