Photo by Francesco Pernigo
Double bass performance
The bow starts to move on the strings and everything begins.
Gazing at a musical event for long time, a voyage of nearly forty minutes.
But it’s only by chance: ten or hundred minutes, it’s not important, everything could have happened.
Starting without knowing the place and the time of arrival.
It begins and it doesn’t want to be catched or blocked, this sound wants to go on. The performer needs to find a profound harmony with the instrument because the effort, the gravity will be felt soon.
After some time the musical journey becomes a search for the limit zone where the voluntary becomes unvoluntary but, at the same time, more real, necessary and true like breathing.
Are we talking about the biology of the performer? About the natural element? Maybe. Certainly, we can’t talk about the word natural like something fixed, finished or definable.
The idea, or better the point of departure, comes from the Joseph Beuys’ work “A one hour drama” , where a bottle it’s filmed for one hour, revealing the breath of the cameraman.
Nothing to be interpreted in this performance, like Beuys pretended for his works, but the awareness that something that creates movement it’s necessary: an indescribable tension, untellable, uncatchable, pure movement.
An ever-changing repetition, a fluid movement, without constraints, without limits, without hidden meanings or definitions, undetermined and infinite, energies that flow and emanate, a continuous becoming.
When I think at what it’s happening in this body, I remember another one, the Gilles Deleuze’s Body Without Organs: no explications, only one of the many, possible directions.
“I do not know how many double bass players are able to show this dazzling excursion of freedom and art.... one of those works that go in the direction of those fantastic theories (in present times) which considers the sounds as the main catalysts of the matter: in classical music composers have represented it through the overtones and saturations, Bertoni reaches it with improvisation.”
“One wonders how he could sustain such an intense and physically demanding pace. He executes a circuitous course of action, layered with complex intricacies via his unadulterated power and dexterity.”