GAME Season Kick-off Concert

Listen to the Lamb | The Art of Stealing
@ Bijloke Music Centre, Ghent

The Just Judges, the stolen lower left panel of the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb, the Ghent Altarpiece by Jan van Eyck, is almost a century later still being searched after. Stealing is therefore pretty much the code word of this performance. But just as the search for The Just Judges is quite complex, GAME will elevate the act of stealing into a genuine art discipline.
In this performance fragments are being stolen from a score by Guillaume Dufay, a contemporary of Jan van Eyck and probably also portrayed in his canvas Léal Souvenir. The latter is no more than an assumption, suggested by historians who think they know, but we know for sure that Giovanni di Arrigo Arnolfini, a Tuscan merchant who settled in Bruges, was portrayed by Jan van Eyck and also owned a unique manuscript with a large number of masses by Flemish polyphonists. One such mass was Dufay’s Missa L’Homme Armé, whose cantus firmus was taken – or stolen – from a French soldier’s song. After Arnolfini donated the choirbook to the cathedral of Lucca, it disappeared without leaving any trace – doesn’t that ring a bell. Fragments of it were found centuries later as material for binding other books.
GAME will in turn work with stolen fragments of Missa L’homme Armé by cutting, speeding up, slowing down, inverting and repeating them. This process was borrowed, well, stolen from contemporary composer Michael Pisaro. In his song cycle Tombstones Pisaro starts from small fragments and building blocks of well-known pop songs, which he treated as found objects. From a different perspective you could as well call it stolen objects – what’s in a name.
Oh yes, speaking of tombstones: the gravestone of Dufay’s tomb was stolen from the cathedral of Cambrai and later found as the cover stone for a well. Which in turn rings another bell: since decades persistent rumors claim that the Just Judges are hidden in the historic well of the Achtersikkel in Ghent, the very home of the Royal Conservatory of Ghent and… GAME!

– Tombstones – Michael Pisaro
– Adapted fragments and interpretations of Missa L’homme Armé – Guillaume Dufay

Leonardo Melchionda: e-guitar & stolen objects
Elliott Harrison: percussion & stolen objects
Aya Suzuki: percussion & stolen objects
Lucas Messler: percussion & stolen objects
Jacqueline Berndt: flute & stolen objects
Noriko Yakushiji: voice & stolen objects

Concept and Artistic Direction:
Joris Blanckaert & Tom De Cock

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