Eigenschwingungen – Forces of Overtones

Eigenschwingungen – Forces Of Overtones

The encounter: there is no sound without a second, third, fourth one. Something always resonates. But what? European music history prefers fundamental tones; they are considered “harmonious”. Bells, claves, gongs, flutes…most bodies of sound outside of Europe respond to different aesthetic needs.

The specialist in sound studies and composer meLê yamomo and the cellist Eurico Ferreira Mathias are coming together at Ballhaus Naunynstraße on this evening. The classical repertoire of European music history has shaped their education. The musical landscape of their everyday life was shaped by other frequencies. By meeting here, they will explore the limits of the two sound worlds, pierce them, interfuse them, in order to generate decolonial waves and forms of listening.

There is no sound without a second, third, fourth one. Something always resonates. We want to say something, hit the right note. But even the cheekbones, the skin on our face, yes even our whole body resonates. Our voice is what defines us – but there is a lot that resonates. And if we take up an instrument, the matter becomes even clearer. Because not only the instrument and your own body, but also the room and the bodies of those listening contribute to the sound in the room. Multiple natural vibrations rub against each other and if someone screams in fear they can shatter glass. Some cultures reduce the fundamental tone to increase the diversity of the overtones.

The European definition of “harmonic” is entirely local. With Eigenschwingungen – Forces of Overtones, meLê yamomo and Eurico Ferreira Mathias bet on the expansion of listening habits, an experience and appreciation of migrating sounds and on transforming vibrations for the happy encounter of “disharmonious” tones, for new concurrencies.

meLê yamomo (sound scholar, composer, and performer)
Eurico Ferreira Mathias (cellist)

Premiere: 11 November 2021.
Reprise: 27-28 May 2022.