Photo © Guanglong Peng & Hengjie Zhao
three music box players and electronics (stereo) (2017, German premiere) 8.15′
»Orison« is part of the series »In Praise of Shadows« which was inspired by Tanizaki Jun‘ichirō’s essay of the same name from 1933. The essay describes how shadows and negative space are integral to traditional Japanese aesthetics, both in music and architecture, as well as in food and the design of everyday objects. As Tanizaki explains, »[W]e find beauty not in the thing itself but in the patterns of [its] shadows… Without shadows there would be no beauty«.
»Orison«, for three music boxes and electronics, is underpinned by recordings of children during wartime, speaking and singing about hope, peace and the suffering they had to endure. Their melodies are brought to the fore through the music boxes. The work was commissioned by the 21C Music Festival (Canada).
Kotoka Suzuki (b. in Tokyo, Japan) studied composition at Indiana University and Stanford University with Jonathan Harvey. Her work encompasses both multimedia and instrumental works, including interactive audio-visuals in both concert and installation formats. Her works often explore themes such as living, breathing, and wind. Suzuki’s music has been presented at international venues such as the ZKM | Media Museum, Lucerne Festival and ISCM World Music Days, and has been performed by the Arditti Quartet, the Pacifica Quartet and the Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra Leipzig, among others. Suzuki has received numerous awards and grants and was a guest of the DAAD Artists-in-Residence www.kotokasuzuki.com