hier und dort

Cora Schmeiser, cd, hier und dort, Oswald von Wolkenstein, George Aperghis, Hildegard von Bingen, I. K. Bonset, Jon Cage, Bernard de Ventadorn, Kurt Schwitters, Beth Anderson, Phillipp der Kanzler

hier and dort (here and there)

The constellation of vocal melodies and text-sound works of hier und dort is the result of movement from one place to another, whether this be in life or in thought, in the past or in the present, in the macrocosm of life, time or universe, or in the microcosm of voice, its spatial sound and articulation.

People of the 13th and 15th centuries feared "the beast" of death (Ich spür ain tier) and warned about the splendorous yet treacherous temporal world that brings sorrow and failure (Worldes blis). Yet they hoped their good deeds would ease their way through purgatory and guide them to eternal enlightenment in heaven.

In the 20th century, extremely high and low pitches of the voice reach out for perceptible geographical locations like cities, rivers, and mountains (Solo for voice 67). Hildegard von Bingen’s antiphone Laus trinitati fills the space with "sound and life" as she speaks about the "marvel of secrets" imperceptible to man.

21st century recitations are surrounded by mystery and suppositions: what if ...? (If I were a poet). Tubercular sounds and auditive gestures (Récitation 8) lead us to spiritual places where the Gregorian chant Veritas veritatum reminds us of the true healing powers of Jesus Christ: "Get up, take up your bed, and walk!"

Ventadorn bemoans his unrequited love in Provençal using poetic metaphors like "the freedom of the lark on its whirling flight towards the sun", "the unhappy heart detained by love", and "the drowning after a look in the eyes of a beloved" (Can vei la lauzeta). His fellow poets I. K. Bonset (Theo van Doesburg) and Kurt Schwitters, on the other hand, interpret language in itself as letter-sound-images (Letterklankbeelden) or syllables for the scherzo and trio ("to be recited extremely slowly") in the Ursonate.

John Cage ends the journey with an amalgam of text fragments and colored notation in the graphic score of his piece Aria (1958).

The instrumental and vocal 'bridges' composed by Dietmar Bonnen and Cora Schmeiser whisper and sound from here to there.

Cora Schmeiser


sound samples


04 - Récitation 8 - George Aperghis | Paris (1945- )


06 - Laus trinitati - Hildegard von Bingen | Bingen (1098-1179)


13 - Can vei la lauzeta - Bernard de Ventadorn l Langue d'Oc (ca. 1135-ca. 1200)


17 - If I were a poet - Beth Anderson | New York (1950- )


hier und dort was recorded in July, September and October 2013 in the Loft, Cologne

Dietmar Bonnen - production / bridges

Stefan Deistler - recording / editing

Arnold Schalks - cover / layout



Betsy M. Blan / Christopher Morrissey / Alan Robertshaw / Arnold Schalks / Cora Schmeiser


CD data: P330.39 / DDD / GEMA / OBST 2014 / total time: 49'01

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