Trance

The term "trance" which, during the Middle-Ages, meant "to leave, to pass away, to flow out," comes from the Latin, "Transire."
Starting in the fifth century, it often meant fo "pass from life to death," or from one existence to another, similar in meaning to the term "Samadhi" in Hinduism.
Though the expression "to enter into trance" in the sense of a particular psycho-physiological state appeared in the XIV century, the trance state itself has been known to Man from the beginning-less beginning(s).


In the wake of their October 2009 show presented in Montréal at the invitation of the Festival du nouveau cinéma, Belgian pianist-composer Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven and painter-filmmaker Jean Detheux (Belgian also, residing in Montréal) pursue their exploration of the mysterious relationship between music and images with a new concert combining music and video.
After "From Frescobaldi to Pollock, from Rembrandt to Steve Reich" (FNC 2009), they now invest in the exploration of the universe of the trance. Through the incantatory and suspended music of Giacinto Scelsi (Suite #9, "Ttai"), the obsessional rhythmicity of John Adams' Phrygian Gates, and an improvisation, it is the state of listening ("l'écoute" in French) which is questioned, particularly that moment when the field of consciousness collapses due to a hypnotic effect, and when the music-image association carries us "elsewhere," within our self. In the commentary of his piece, Scelsi writes: "This suite must be listened to and played with the greatest inner calm. Agitated persons must abstain!" For him, repetitivity is a means to reaching the very soul of the sound, to reaching a state of quasi mediumistic receptivity of an energy that transcends us. It is worth noting that the sophisticated minimalism of John Adams, through its repetitions, its large developments but also its abrupt ruptures and its sound effervescence ("bouillonnement sonores") bring us to a state similar to Scelsi's music, but by following different paths. Occurring between the two, Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven's improvisation will act as a bridge (aren't "trance" and "transition" also related?), a moment of connectedness to the "here and now," a tie between the written and the fugacious. Jean Detheux's animated images bring to that universe of sound the vertiginous dimension of a visual echo which could be like the filming of an inner world, with its endless subtle and imperceptible fluctuations.

Jean Detheux, painter-filmmaker



Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven, pianist-composer




see an excerpt of "Phrygian Gates"


see an excerpt of "Improvisation 1"

Vimeo

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