Ictus/Eva Reiter [BE/AT]

The Lichtenberg Figures

The Lichtenberg Figures
The Lichtenberg Figures


A demanding world

Ictus presents a full-length work by the Austrian composer Eva Reiter. For several years she has played the viola da gamba and the contrabass recorder and is a permanent partner of this Brussels ensemble. As a composer she may well be the most likely heiress to the untimely deceased Fausto Romitelli.

Reiter was inspired by a popular format from the late Renaissance, the Book of Ayres, and wrote The Lichtenberg Figures as a set of seven songs and six instrumental interludes, preceded by a prologue. The music develops in line with the 2004 poem cycle by the American Ben Lerner. Lerner’s sonnets are full of unconventional changes of perspective, ranging from banal observations, quotes and academic discussions to ironic commentaries.

Reiter creates a musical universe that demands a new kind of virtuosity from the musicians. The singer herself operates the device that distorts her voice, some instruments are also used as voices and the sound engineer quite literally determines the proximity of the sound amplification.

The Lichtenberg Figures is modelled on the dark side of our minds and our existence. Optical illusions, hallucinations, and the construction of an imaginary identity are inevitable.

music Eva Reiter | musicians Ictus (flute and clarinet, trumpet and trombone, percussion, electric guitar and keyboards, string trio, e-bass) | soprano Juliet Fraser | conductor Georges-Elie Octors | sound direction Alex Fostier | lights & scenography Nico de Rooij & Djana Covic (SIDF)