Percussionissimo: Konstruct #17

Konstruct is a series of the The Hague Royal Conservatoire, where composition meets percussion. Students of the Composition Department, under the guidance of teacher Peter Adriaansz, collaborate with Percussion students, coached by Niels Meliefste. Thursday 18 April saw the seventeenth edition of the cooperation in the Korzo Theatre, The Hague.

The first composition performed was by Sol Ey and is called 'Perspectives 1, Objects around us'. Live electronics. Exploring the surface of a special tam-tam put to sound. An intriguing soundscape was delivered by Sol Ey, who handed the microphone and José Silva who operated a loudspeaker. With only the light from the microphone and the audience walking around the tam-tam the performance resulted in a very special and interesting happening. Sol:"I discovered this set up by mistake."

Performing Isthmus

Four percussionists and electronics by composer Filip Sternal made up the line up for Isthmus. Filip:"I don't want to tell much about my piece. It is up to the audience should judge the music the way they want to. But what I can say is that the piece is for nine wind organ pipes and for marimba and vipraphone. The pipes are live recorded and that is being presented by the speakers the pipes play live against it. And the marimba and vibraphone uses all the empty sound and colours using the harmonics of the pipes. I jpoined the project not having any expectations. With no specific ideas. I went to the instrument library, which is quite massive, and there were like twenty or thirty organ pipes. And I tested them. And I thought it would be great to work with these instruments. They only can produce one sound. I thought that was enough for me to really move on with the piece." The marimba player on stage and the organ pipe players high up in the stands Filip orchestrated a fine inclusive soundscape.
Dimitris Roubos:"I was interested in how we can perceive small changes in sound. A few cords, a few melodies. So I just used 13 chords in this piece and created a structure around it. From a more clear sound to a more contoured sound." With two set ups of double sided music stands including bells, xylophone etc. Dimitris presented a quasi minimalistic (13 chords) composition on the layer of a constant drone-like tone, called 'Gestalt'.

Performing Gestalt

Niels Meliefste:"The next piece is called 'Nocturne' by Mátyás Wettl. It was composed for Slagwerk Den Haag three years ago for Gaudeamus Week. He wanted to work with instruments which would light up, when you hit them. But there was only a budget of 250 Euro. So that did not came true. But it still resulted in a fine piece." It was written for percussion quartet, sixteen light switches and table lamps. The clicks of the switches created fantastic rhythmic music.

Performance of 'Nocturne'

    The percussionists were:
  • Gonçalo Reis
  • Antione Joselis Miguel
  • Correia Varela
  • Yago Castello Gisbert

Sound Engineer: Kaan Yazici