Duo TonSatz / artist's apartment / Waldmühle 02.09.2020
Gisela Steudter, freelance culture journalist Böhme-Zeitung/Soltau
In all its ambiguity
The Waldmühle Library drew crystal clear attention to the lecture by Christiane Schwarze and Eva Batt. For 20 years, the composer Batt and the writer Schwarze have been working together as duo TonSatz in a way that is more and different than setting lyrics to music or adding texts to music. They now used the artist's apartment in Soltau to work on their new project, an “episode narrative which will also be set to music”.
"For today's lecture we had planned the whole orchestra with which we premiered our previous project and recorded it on CD," said Batt in her introduction. Due to the current hygiene regulations, however, it was impossible to bring five musicians from Germany and abroad. Therefore, Batt confidently and inconspicuously used the playback technology in excellent sound quality, while Schwarze read her poems in such a way that every word in all its ambiguity penetrated the ear. This is how TonSatz presented their previous project, the “Mosaic of a Search” under the title “The Silence of the Shadows”.
Even the introduction was a work of art. In everyday narrative language, Batt managed to visualize the special atmosphere of the places where the artists could develop their project with the support of given grants. The concept was born in France, in Sweden new ideas arose through the interaction with the landscape and the direct view of the sea, and the snow-covered remote mountain village in Switzerland spoke and sang of love, distance and pain.
Schwarze’s poetry hits the heart of the soul. In succinct words like pinpricks, she visualizes the loneliness in the midst of the noise, the confusion in the “maze of options” or the pain of the lover, to whom the beloved has died before. “The silence broke the heart of the earth”. There are no rose-colored glasses, but there are no good sides to what is bad. But there is the love for life - "Raindrops sound bright" - and there is the freedom to think for yourself - "On which side does life breath?"
In the midst of the painfully stagnant "shadow melody", the 9pm ringing of the Soltau churches mingled, dissonant and yet surprisingly fitting.
Article published on September 5th, 2020 in the Böhme-Zeitung/Soltau
Publication approval received from Gisela Steudter and Andree Küsel (Böhme-Zeitung).
© Text and photo: Gisela Steudter
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