Saxophone sounds in the Highlands - with the Swedish collective Otiden


A beautiful collaboration emerged with roots in Malmö, Sweden that spread all the way to the Northern Highlands. Hanna Ågren and her saxophone trio Otiden (which evocatively translates to un-time) have been working on their performance at Interarts Malmö, a multimedia music concert in a blackbox that involved a stunning choreography with a mountain sunrise on film.

I've been happy to join on the creative side as a location scout and cinematographer, as it meant I would stand in a most favourite place by a rolling camera and catch the sun rising to the misty mountains on a 45-minute long clip. Taking the cold and the frost gnawing on my walking boots and batteries away, it was a simple yet heart-warming experience. Comparing it to the rather common hectic on film shoots, to stand alone by a hillside in the wild heather, all this landscape illuminated by golden morning light, was pretty special. I played Hanna's music along, and while the Scottish hills might have been surprised at the mellow saxophone sounds, I wasn't that this brought tears in my eyes.

Listen to Otiden's music here on Soundcloud!

In my mind a beautifully conceptualised piece: Hanna's music performance would be interconnect to the landscape that was projected on film on one of the walls in the blackbox. Her trio's music would start in darkness, the sun still below the horizon, and during the 40 minutes of the concert, the saxophone sounds would accompany the sun slowly rising and bringing light to mountains and the blackbox. For the audience, it meant witnessing a musical sunrise.

Thoughts:

through digital film, my moment of joy on that mountain side could live a second life with the musicians and the audience far away

the Highland sun can also illuminate a concert hall in Malmö

music and film go together in many many art forms

It amazes me time and again how art and creative projects can spread across countries and bring the Highlands of Scotland to a blackbox in Malmö. Looking at Hanna's invitation card, people DID really get the chance to be transported to the humming and whistling hills, on a misty and frosty morning out in the wild...

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