Playing architecture. Creating worlds.
When I was in Guadalajara (Mexico) in order to create Vokal-De-Konstruktion in spring 2017, I went to see a dance performance at LARVA (Laboratorio de Arte Variedades). Right away, I was awestruck by the acoustics and the potential for sounding that the space promised at first sight and first listen. The ceiling is very high, with a metal grid at about 12 metres from the ground, with an additional 12 metres or so of air between the grid and the ceiling. The walls are mainly made of bricks, and along the walls are metal pillars and other metal structures. To me LARVA seemed like an instrument - a spacious instrument that could be played from inside and experienced from within.
When I was back in Stockholm, I kept thinking about this space and how it would enable me to explore vertical movements of sounds by placing musicians on the metal grid, with the audience able to move freely beneath the musicians. Soon I started to prepare the project by getting in contact with LARVA and the University of Guadalajara with the help of my collaboration partner, the architect and light artist Juan Perdo Ponce Bolanos. I asked for percussionists, string instrumentalists and singers from the university’s music department. Together they could play the architecture in different ways. Since the space was so enormous, I was inspired to use the ‘Music of the Universe’ as the theme. I researched the philosophy and poetics of this idea, and caught up on the newest developments in Asteroseismology, which is the science that studies the internal structure of stars by the interpretation of their surface pulsations (Aerts et al., 2010). In order to explore the movement in the universe while it appears still, I invited choreographer Karina Bosche to join me on this project. Less than one year later I found myself back in the space that had been fascinating me from a distance.