Catherine Vickers & Sebastian Berweck
On the left is Catherine Vickers, on the right is Sebastian Berweck. Both faces can be seen in profile.
Electronic Music and Sound Art
Thu, October 05, 2023 7.30 pm CEST, Concert
Language: German

Catherine Vickers and Sebastian Berweck form a unique duo that combines acoustic piano sounds with synthesizers in an extraordinary program. With works by Tristan Murail, Yves Daoust, Hans Tutschku and Nicole Lizée.

Inspired by H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos, Tristan Murail (*1947, France) composed two duos for Yamaha DX7 synthesizer that have hardly been played for the past forty years: »Atlantys« and »Vision de la Cité Interdite« (1986). The dark and mystical sound world of the old FM synthesizers, which were state-of-the-art back then, now seems retro and contemporary at the same time.

A decade later, the Canadian Yves Daoust (*1946) composed his »Impromptu 2« for piano, synthesizer, and fixed media (1995). This epic piece combines city worlds with sirens and children's screams with highly virtuosic piano playing reminiscent of Chopin, creating an image of urban post-capitalist isolation. »Impromptu 2«, one of the most outstanding Canadian compositions of recent decades, is rarely performed due to its pianistic and electroacoustic complexity.

Even higher levels of pianistic virtuosity can be heard in »Irrgärten« (2010) by German composer Hans Tutschku (*1966). Like a journey through various labyrinths, the composition explores how we remember musical moments. The two piano parts form energetic dialogues that are further expanded and intensified by the live electronics.

»Sepulchre« (2018–19) by Canadian composer Nicole Lizée (*1973) premiered at the Donaueschingen Music Festival in 2019. Nicole Lizée, who was included in the Kronos Quartet's »50 for the Future« list, will orchestrate the piece for two synthesizers for the duo of Catherine Vickers and Sebastian Berweck. The new work will premiere at this concert.

Busoni Prize winner Catherine Vickers (*1952, Canada) and pianist and synthesizer player Sebastian Berweck (*1971, Germany) form a unique duo for piano and electronics. Vickers and Berweck combine curiosity, pianistic virtuosity, and electronics at the highest level and will go on tour with this program after its kickoff at the ZKM in the USA and Canada.


Ludger Brümmer (Curator)
Dominik Kautz (Project manager)
Sebastian Schottke (Sound director)
Hans Gass (Light & stage technician)