What got you here won’t get you there

Performance What got you here won’t get you there, MaerzMusik Festival at Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin commissioned by Freunde Guter Musik, 2011
Photos: Mutesouvenir | Kai Bienert © Kai Bienert | Egill Sæbjörnsson & Marcia Moraes

The title of the project “what got you here, won’t get you there” is taken from a self help book and refers to how people try to improve something in their life. In a way we always keep improving and changing everything, including our view upon music. And it also refers to dramaturgy where one part comes after the other, where unrelated things are brought together a little bit like in Robert Rauschenberg’s “combines” from the 1960’s. In this project we will use everything as notation. Every single movement or form that appears is directly seen as a music score. As music exists without sound as a score written on paper we will pursue that aspect into our view on the show. In his art installations Egill blends video projections with objects in a way that sometimes evokes questions about notation. In his performances he often mixes music with spoken text and playing with objects. And in his music he explores both more traditional ways of song composing with pop music as well as working with classical contemporary music and visual score. Most of the times these different aspects of looking at what music is not combined and that is our starting point; the different ways to approach music in one performance. “What got you here won’t get you here”, refers to the constant motion of life, to the constant motion of our mind, of how everything changes and embraces the time element of music and performance of part A, B and C in a song and of the different seasons of the year etc. As the title indicates “What got you here wont get you there” we will work with breaking the expectations of the audience. We might start with something that looks like a typical piano concert but then suddenly the leg under the piano breaks and a confusing situation builds up. In this way we dialoge with the performance in the sence of using all senses in a complex setup. But the music is not only seen as the audible parts but will be investigated as visual scores where we use objects that are moved around and lit up to create trajetory of movement from one object to the next. A great inspiration is the piece “Lauf der Dinge” by Fischli and Weiss where one thing comes after the other. At some point we might be silently using visual material to “create music” and in another part we might place a person wearing a white t-shirt playing folk guitar and sing. We like the tension between different appearences and presentations of the music. Notes on paper is not the same as the same notes played by an instrument and is also something else than the recording of that live performance. Performance and the space that it has created within visual arts and connected different fields together is an important issue for us. Everything from Pollock dripping his paint on the canvas making the action an integrated part of the end product the painting itself we are keen on exploring these areas between different known “genders”such as music, visual art, theater, philosophy, video art etc.

Creation / Direction: Egill Sæbjörnsson and Marcia Moraes
Videos: Egill Sæbjörnsson
Music composition: Egill Sæbjörnsson, Áki Ásgeirsson and Magnús Jensson
Arrangements: Áki Ásgeirsson and Egill Sæbjörnsson

Voice and guitar: Egill Sæbjörnsson
Adapter Ensemble für Neue Musik:
Flutes – Kristjana Helgadóttir
Piano & keyboards – Marc Tritschler
Percussion – Matthias Engler
Sound effects: Steinunn Arnardóttir and Leópold Kristjánsson

Lights: Roland Hamilton
Architectural drawing: Magnús Jensson
3D animation: Thomas Heidtmann
Sculpture / installation manufacture: Katharina Kamph, Karoline Kreissl and Pablo Fernandez
Production assistance: Manuela Altmann and Maria Ebbinghaus
Curators: Ingrid Buschmann and Gabriele Knapstein