Wooden sticks, pieces of felt, tape strips, table-tennis balls – with great inventiveness and various everyday objects, the successful pianist and composer Volker Bertelmann alias Hauschka creates an unexpected world of sounds with the piano. The resulting percussive or rustling sounds, which make one assume the usage of drums and electronic devices, give the atmospherically dense, rhythm-based compositions of the Düsseldorf-based musician a lyrical quality. After our two celebrated nights with the dancer Edivaldo Ernesto from the company of Sasha Waltz, Hauschka returns to the stage of UM:LAUT in March in order to present his new solo album “Abandoned City” for the first time. We are very much looking forward to another one of his unique performances – apart from the grand piano being transformed into a laboratory of sound, Hauschka’s “ensemble” is extended by two programmable player pianos for this special night at Radialsystem.
For “Abandoned City”, which will be released by the great label City Slang in March, he has drawn inspiration from ghost towns – around 2,500 of such abandoned places exist world-wide. It is the images and stories of these deserted settlements, in which the pianist has discovered moods which he knows from the process of concentrated artistic creativitiy. “Beauty, transitoriness, melancholy, and absurdity – in the abandoned places already reclaimed by nature, I encounter a metaphor for what happens inside of me.” After experimenting with beats and almost danceable rhythms on his last album, his new work both draws lines back to his earlier releases and explores new territory in the deeper layers of his sound creations.
Hauschka, who has recently recorded an album with the exceptional American violinist Hilary Hahn, composed music for Döris Dörrie’s film “Glück” and launched a new live project with the renowned Techno-DJ Henrik Schwarz in Amsterdam, is regarded as one of the most remarkable modern proponents of the prepared piano. With relatively simple means, he explores the tonal diversity of the keyboard instrument with metal pieces, foils and other objects placed inside the piano or attached to the strings. Since his initial solo improvisations, the classically trained pianist has continually developed, recording some of his fourteen albums with other musicians as well as integrating electronic elements in his works. Meanwhile, Hauschka is mentioned alongside composers such as Eric Satie or John Cage as well as contemporary musicians like Max Richter, Yann Tiersen or Nils Frahm. It is difficult to categorise Hauschka’s music as it moves between sound art and experimental, modern classical and chamber music, electronica and pop, with his last solo album broadening his spectrum to minimal techno and house. In March 2014 his new record “Abandoned City” will be released by the great City Slang label.
Another unique UM:LAUT experience to come – we are very proud to host Hauschka’s record release concert and hope to welcome you for a great night at Radialsystem!
Hauschka | Abandoned City | Record Release Concert
22 March | 20:00 | Radialsystem Berlin
Tickets available now at Radialsystem, Koka36 or online!