Around 1662/63 Michel Lambert composed his first complete cycle of Leçons des Ténèbres. (He completed a second cycle dated 1689.) They were performed in front of the king in Paris at L’Eglise de Feuillants. The lessons are a series of meditations that from my personal understanding and experience aim at bringing listeners and performers beyond the shadows of death and sorrow, allowing for a sensation of wholeness rather than separation between pain and hope. The musical manuscript is colored by detailed written out vocal ornamentations. I am currently engaged in an artistic research study of these meditative lessons and their vocal ornaments. Throughout the study I read the score through the philosophical understanding of two concepts: the concept of NOTHINGNESS and the concept of JE-NE-SAIS-QUOI. In the process of performing the musical ornaments I set off on a journey into a certain-something-not-yet-known, that cannot really be described, since the score at first can be viewed as rather "irrational" (Massip 2009:220) but at the same time extremely detailed and specific. It is in this spacetime in-between reason and non-reason where I and my collaboraters search to translate this wonderful meditative music from the 17th century into meaning and sound.
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Belgrano, E. (2011) "Lasciatemi morire" o faró "La Finta Pazza": Embodying Vocal Nothingness on Stage in Italian and French 17th century Operatic Laments and Mad Scenes, ArtMonitor, doctoral diss., Gothenburg.
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Calcagno, M.(2004) Signifying Nothing: On the Aesthetics of Pure Voice in Early Venetian Opera, The Journal of Musicology, Vol. 20, No.4, pp. 247-274.
Massip, C. (1999) L’art de bien chanter: Michel Lambert (1610-1696), Société Françaises de Musicologie, Paris.
Nishida.K (1926/27) Basho. In: Krummel, John W. M. & Nagatomo, S. (2012) Place and Dialectic: Two Essays by Nishida Kitaro, Oxford Scholarship on-line, January 2012.
Scholar, Richard. (2005)The Je-Ne-Sais-Quoi in Early Modern Europe. Encounters with a certain something, Oxford Univ Press.
Uehara, Mayuko 2009, Japanese Aspects of Nishida’s Basho: seeing the ‘Form without Form’, in Frontiers of Japanese Philosophy 4, Lam Wing-keung and Cheung Ching-yuen (eds.), Nagoya: Nanzan Institute for Religion & Culture.