The Midnight Giant // Residency at the BANFF centre for arts and creativity in Canada

The whole of february I was staying at the BANFF centre for arts & creativity in Canada where I took part in the Choral Arts Program with ProCoro Canada, directed by Michael Zaugg. The purpose of the program was to bring together composers and conductors from very diverse backgrounds for working together on newly written music, which was just created over the span of our few weeks stay there. I am extremly grateful for receiving this unique opportunity and meeting such a bunch of extremly creative, kind & inspiring people. If you have any spare time you definitely should check out all the amazing work they are doing (Composers: Henrik Dahlgren, Hope Littwin, Marie-Claire Saindon, & Netta Shahar // Conductors: Brian Mummert, Katy Harmer, Miro Hanauer, Mona Holten & Thomas Burton)!


Our whole process of creating such an insane amount of new music in this short time given was guided by the amazing staff of Lone Larsen (conducting), Sven Helbig (composition) & Michael Zaugg himself. Their input and guidance was invaluable during our 3 week lasting and very intense schedule of composing, rehearsing, workshops, improvisation & (self-)reflection. After the first week of new input, all the composers were supposed to spend a lot of time during the second week to write a new piece, which then was rehearsed in the third week by one of the conductors (in my case: the fabulous Brian Mummert).


The piece I wrote ("The Midnight Giant") was on one hand inspired by a couple of different dreamlike nocturnal giants of movie-history (from Twin Peaks, Princess Mononoke & the children's television-series Hilda). The other huge source of inspiration was (of course) the unique and extremly impressing nature of the Rocky Mountains surrounding the whole town of Banff. So one day I took a handheld recorder with me on a long hike and recorded a lot of noise and ambience out in the snowy landscape of Canada. Afterwards I processed those recordings and put them together to create a set of live-electronics to accompany the singers of ProCoro during the concert. The piece itself kind of describes a dreamlike and otherworldly state between sleeping and waking (just as you would feel right after waking up from a horrible nightmare and falling back to sleep again).


Below you may take a listen to this waking giant...

Dominik Johannes Dieterle