GERMANY / UNITED KINGDOM – 2004 – 98 MIN – COLOUR - FEATURE - IN ENGLISH
A FILM BY THOMAS RIEDELSHEIMER
At the heart of every life form there is rhythm, movement, flow, change, renewal and repetition are all based on rhythm. It is only in rhythm, that we can experience time. Without vibration, without oscillation, there is statis. There is nothing. Stbility and solidity are illusions. Everything oscillates and vibrates — from the bridge of steel and concrete, to the energy shells around an atom. Even colours oscillate at different frequencies. We recognize and experience our world through rhuthm. Everything vibrates — everything speaks. It is, in essence, a universe of sound.
Evelyn Glennnie lives in this universe in a way that almost no one else does. Together with her, this film dives into the world of sound and rhythm — and into the world of our origins.
Hearing images, seeing sound.
￼Evenly Glennie embarks upon the recording of a new CD, within the four walls of a vast, decaying, industrial warehouse. She is the top classical, solo percussionist in the world — a role virtually of her own creation; a musician especially for whom an entire corpus of works has been written, yet, for this CD the pages of the score are blank. She sits in this light-filled space with Fred Frith — the great master of avant-garde music. Together they will create a CD as an improvisational exploration of sound and image using the space around them, as well as their instuments and intuititve talent, they follow this twin-track route. Hearing images. Seeing sound.
Accompanying Evelyn on her journey is filmmaker Thomas Reiedelsheimer — winner of the 2001 German cinematography pricze, the Golden Gate Award Grand Prize in San Francisco (2002), the Grand Prix Montreal (2002) and two German Film Prizes (best Camera, Best Documentary) in 2003 with RIVERS AND TIDES — a portrait of sculptor Andy Goldsworthy, working with time.
The starting point for Thomas and Evelyn's journey is the sounds and rhythms that surround us in everyday life. And from there, the path delves deeper — sculpting the nature of sound itself, discovering its genesis and how the universe depends upon it. Thomas and Evelyn track the road from breath to heart beat. From silence to music. From hearing to seeing to feeling. From fluid vibration to solid matter.
Evelyn's ability to guide this exploration has little to do with an intimate knowledge of physics. Evelyn Glennie is profoundly deaf. She lives in balance between rhythm and matter; between sound and seeing. Her conversation with the drums is not so much perceived through the ears — it is, in fact felt; through every sense in her body. For her, hearing is a form of touch. Sound is palpable. The improvised musical journey, in this warehouse-recording studio, forms a road map. It becomes the backbone of Thomas Riedelsheimer's film.