in only eight seconds

for Duo Strings&Noise.
Premiere 26.11.2022, Crossroads Festival, Universität Mozarteum, Salzburg, Austria. Sophia Goidinger-Koch, violin. Barbara Riccabona, cello.

Violin making is a fascinating and strange cult, in which physical law and mysticism have always been deeply intertwined. It was not long ago that I discovered a beautiful, weird violin at Staatsgalerie Stuttgart which neglects all of the normative violin making law since it’s totally asymmetrical and made out of cardboard. I looked closer only to find out that this violin was built by Pablo Picasso himself! I immediately asked myself: how would it sound to play on it? Since the gallery unfortunately didn’t allow me to try that out (I have no idea why), I imagined the sounds not only of playing the violin, but also of Picasso’s building process.

The composition connects this 100 years old violin with another strange cult from today: the piece essentially is an imagined utopian YouTube-style DIY tutorial how to build Picasso’s cardboard violin by yourself. The actual building process – testimony to the digital fast pace in the ages of TikTok – takes only eight seconds, followed by three surreal ritualized tests that are supposed to prove the authenticity of the instrument. The manipulation of the imagined playhead finally breaks the linear time axis and takes a newly developed cultural technique as the piece’s dramaturgical basis: skipping through videos.