Vannstand by Maja S.K. Ratkje

Vannstand is a tribute to the slowly changing water levels along the Norwegian coast – created by composer Maja S.K. Ratkje with children from Oslo’s Tøyen School.

Ratkje has been an outspoken voice on environmental issues for years. Vannstand - Water Level - is a continuation of this commitment where she unites new music and the inheritors of our planet. She uses local water level measurements to create graphic scores, which in turn are interpreted musically by children. The life-giving sea has been the basis for growth and development, and now human influence is changing the seemingly eternal cycle along the Norwegian coast.

In Vannstand children are given the opportunity to reflect and respond musically to this issue. The piece emphasises “the beauty of imperfection” that the young players bring to the sound. The first part of Vannstand is a sound installation that was presented at the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet on the opening day of Only Connect 2015.

Workshops at Tøyen skole

 

Viddeo from Vannstand rehearsals at Tøyen skole. Video produced by Den Norske Opera & Ballett.

Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.
Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.
Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.
Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.
Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.
Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.

Opening of Vannstand

Photos by Henrik Beck.

Vannstand under Only Connect 2015. Foto: Henrik Beck.
Foto: Henrik Beck.
Foto: Henrik Beck.
Maja S.K. Ratkje med Barn fra Tøyen skole, fra Vannstand under Only Connect, juni 2015. Foto: Henrik Beck.
Foto: Henrik Beck.
Foto: Henrik Beck.

Children from Tøyen school: Afifa, Nawal, Aisha, Shalika, Nahill, Nora, Hibo, Shuja, Yonis og Alwiya from 4A. Najma, Fadumo, Muniba, Hoda, Saja, Aisha og Hussein fom 4B. 

Vannstand (Water level) is a continuing development project. Maja S.K. Ratkje will visit towns along the Norwegian coast - Stavanger, Bergen, Harstad and Oslo - and make pieces based on children's interpretations of charts of water level measurements.

Foto: Ann Kristin Traaen / nyMusikk.

Maja S.K. Ratkje is an internationally renowned composer and performer. She works with everything from orchestral music to performance, installations and free improvisation with groups such as SPUNK. Her music is being performed by Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Intercontemporain og all the Norwegian symphonic orchestras, among others. She has also composed opera for babies and large electronic pieces.

Only Connect Festival Of Sound was established in 2012 and is nyMusikk’s annual festival in Oslo for sound art and adventurous music. The festival has an international profile and a changing theme each year.

The Norwegian National Opera & Ballet
4 - 8 June 2015

Vannstand is commissioned by nyMusikk and produced in collaboration with The Norwegian Opera & Ballet, AKS Tøyen skole and Oslo musikk- og kulturskole. The project has received funding by Norsk kulturråd, Kunstløftet. Thanks to Notam for providing equipment. 

Vannstand will go on tour to Oslo, Bergen and Stavanger in the 2015/2016 season.