music

Do you feel the same?

For one evening on stage eight house residents come together as in a roundelay. One glance at the name plates is enough to see that it is a completely normal community that can be found in any street of the city: people of different origin, upbringing and views of the world, people whose origins are at the rhine or thousands of miles away. Their home is here, where they live wall to wall, meet on their daily way to the mailbox and the bicycle cellar. But this evening is anything but ordinary. The neighbours talk about love, sex and changes in the roles of the sexes. It starts with a small misunderstanding and leads inevitably to the oldest question in the world. Noone knows it they can still look each other in the eye in the morning. This night is all about dancing with a naked soul to find out: Do you feel the same?

Directors: projekt.il, Stage and Costume Design: Stefanie Dellmann
Choreography: Phaedra Pisimisi, Music: Johan Leenders
Dramatic Advisor: Jascha Sommer
Premiere at the Junges Schauspielhaus Düsseldorf on October 23rd, 2017 

As a main focus of my musical concept I tried to establish an ever present party for the actors to be moving in and around in place and time. The various background noises and room simulations used can't really be shown here. So I created a collage of excerpts from the 6 songs I wrote, played and sang for the piece that all show a different approach to the question: "Do you feel the same?"

Do you feel the same? Collage



Garden Eden

"You can only do one of the two: Be at home or in paradise. You can't do both and no man has ever accomplished it. If you are in, you won't come back out any time soon." That's what the little boy Hans is told as he flies right into paradise on his self built kite in search for his bird of paradise.

"I wished that luck was an object that I had found somewhere and took home with me."

The artist collective projekt.il goes on a search for personal paradises and places of desire with refugees and people who have already found refuge. Is life better somewhere? Where is my home? What makes me happy? On stage they tell us about places they have been that are now destroyed, about places of desire that are unreachable and about places they are going to miss.

In 2015/2016 Garten Eden was part of a major holistic and artistic project of the Junges Schauspielhaus Düsseldorf in collaboration with amongst others the PBSA and zakk e.V.. In 2016 it won the Integration Award of the city of Düsseldorf.

Directors: projekt.il, Stage and Costume Design: Stefanie Dellmann
Choreography: Phaedra Pisimisi, Music: Johan Leenders
Choir Lead: Barbara Beckmann, Mitra Zarif-Kayvan
Illustration: Max Fiedler, Dramatic Advisor: Dorle Trachternach
Premiere at the Junges Schauspielhaus Düsseldorf on May 21st, 2016 

The music for this big project revolved around the 24 choir singers and 23 actors taking part. There was dancing and singing, jodeling and crying in 3 different languages. The following collage shows all the rest: beats, melodies and soundscapes developing from to themes representing Hans and his bird of paradise, wonderfully illustrated live by Max Fiedler.

Garden Eden Collage



Cercles/Fictions

A journey through the times, a game - and the question, what we are supposed to believe in: That is Joël Pommerat's play Cercles/Fictions in a nutshell. Pommerat has taken eight stories from the 14th, 20th and 21st century and mixed them up thoroughly. All of them are taking place in moments of crisis in history.

Shortly before the collapse of european aristocracy, an aristocrat tries so seduce a footman. A knight has to betray his beliefs if he wants to carry out the kill command given by his bishop. Right before the outbreak of the first world war a servant decides to go to war. Being a man who was always willing to serve, he is going to refuse command on the battlefield. Right in the midst of the financial crisis a nameless manager is presented with a way to kill his superiors but to achieve it he has to make love to a homeless woman. And the cry of a baby that died at the beginning of the century can still be heard decades later. Throughout the times on question remains: Who was swept to the rim of the circle and is this reality or a different magical world.

Director: Hans-Ulrich Becker, Stage Design: Alexander Müller-Elmau
Costume Design: Stefanie Seitz, Music: Johan Leenders
Dramatic Advisor: Armin Breidenbach
Premiere at the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus on February 7th, 2015 

The musical and acoustic concept revolving around a central "Cercles"-theme, various versions of Metallica's "King Nothing" and a vast soundscape was so complex that it was very hard for me to create a collage that does it justice. The following doesn't either but manages to show the scope of the content (and includes a snippet of my friend and colleague Johannes von Barsewisch's tune "Rey Nada").

Cercles/Fictions Collage



The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

It is seven minutes past midnight. Wellington, the neighbours' dog, lies out on the lawn dead, impaled with a garden fork. Christopher decides to try and find the culprit on his own which for him is not an easy task at all. Because Christopher, 15 years, 3 months and 2 days old, knows nearly everything about math, loves the prime numbers and the colours red and metal, hates yellow and brown and doesn't like being touched. He knows little about other people and often panics when dealing with them. But he knows: A day that starts with you seeing 5 red cars standing in a row is a Good Day, a day for projects. So he bravely decides to leave his small world and finds a new one, strange and frightening, in which the murder of Wellington is just one of many mysteries.

Mark Haddon's phenominally received book The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a modern classic in britain and was recently adapted for the stage by Simon Stephens.

Director: Wera Mahne, Stage and Costume Design: Anna Siegrot
Music: Johan Leenders, Dramatic Advisor: Barbara Kantel
Premiere at the Junges Schauspielhaus Düsseldorf on January 10th, 2014 

With my music I try to find the balance between a movie-like score and something that is still defensive enough to leave the actors freedom to play. Most of all I try to support the audiences compassion for Christopher who himself doesn't find it easy to show his feelings. The following collage tries to convey the musical range of the piece in compressed form.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Collage




The Maids

As soon as her ladyship leaves the house the two maids Solange and Claire start with their ceremony: Rummaging in their lady's wardrobe they try out what happens when the tables are turned. One of them assumes the role of madame and is getting killed in play as preparation for a thorougly planned intrigue against their both loved and hated superior. When the real madame shows up everythings seems to crumble away under their fingers.

What is make believe, what is reality? Even today, 55 years after the world premiere, "The Maids" still is a modern and tremendously thrilling and witty play about class distinction and self-staging.

Director: Nele Weber, Stage Design: Anna Bergemann
Costume Design: Vera Nabbefeld, Video Design: Stephan Komitsch
Music: Johan Leenders, Dramatic Advisors: Juliane Hendes, Katrin Michaels
Premiere at the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus on November 8th, 2013

The centerpiece of my music for "The Maids" is a simple theme that characterizes both the maids and the lady and takes up different forms throughout the piece. Thus I try to shed an additional light on the changing relationships and the distribution of power between the characters. The following collage contains 5 different versions of this theme.

The Maids Collage