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Chromatic Variations

[sax] + Gunther Vandeven + Marnix De Cat

Chromatic Variations is the second programme in which Eric Sleichim and BL!NDMAN travel through time. In three different programmes the saxophone quartet explores polyphonic music from the 12th to the 17th century and creates a highly personal and contemporary reading of this century-old music.

In Chromatic Variations BL!NDMAN plunges into 16th and 17th century polyphony. This time the Leitmotiv is the range of instruments: for this creation the saxophone quartet is joined by a countertenor. During the performance BL!NDMAN plays the concert space as an instrument, a ‘listening room’ that reveals even in its furthest corners the sound of a music that was written to serve the word. The composers of the ‘Seconda Prattica’ (second half of the 16th to the 17th century) made extensive use of chromatics in order to transpose the expressiveness of the words as well as possible. The quartet, ranging from sopranino to bass sax, blends with the voice of the countertenor to give its own form to this mannerist style, partly by the use of electronics. The basis for the programme is the ‘Sybilline Prophecies’ by Orlando Lassus, whose music unites all the trends expressed in renaissance music.

BL!NDMAN brings the early works face to face with contemporary works where colouring is used explicitly.

Eric Sleichim: artistic direction, concept, composition and arrangements

BL!NDMAN [sax]
Koen Maas: soprano saxophone
Roeland Vanhoorne: alto saxophone
Piet Rebel: tenor saxophone
Raf Minten: baritone saxophone

Gunther Vandeven or Marnix De Cat: countertenor

Paul Van Nevel and Eugeen Schreurs: musical advice
Bert Schreurs: research
Marnix De Cat and Frank Agsteribbe: repetiteurs
Luc Schaltin: light design
Jo Thielemans: sound technician
Veerle Vaes: production management

Chromatic Variations is a BL!NDMAN production, coproduced by Brugge2002 Cultural Capital of Europe and Kaaitheater.


Eric Sleichim: My Memory is Failing (Intro) with samples of Messiaen (1908-1992) and texts by G.C.Monteverdi (1567-1643)
John Cage: Five
Elliott Carter: Etude No 4
Girolamo Frescobaldi: Recercar
Orlando Lassus: Carmina Chromatico
Orlando Lassus: Sibylla Persica
John Farmer: Hexachord
Johann Jacob Froberger: Capriccio VI
Henry Purcell: Incassum, Lesbia Rogas
William Byrd: In Nomine
Luca Marenzio: Solo e pensoso
Dietrich Buxtehude: Klaglied
Carlo di Gesualdo / Igor Stravinski: Assumpta est Maria


‘During his renaissance project, Eric Sleichim has brought not only his outstanding skills as a musician, but also his incredible flair for drama to bear’. – Xavier Vandamme, Brussel deze week


03 Dec
Lorca (ES)
02 Dec
Cartagena (ES)
07 Sep
Arminiuskerk (org. Gergiev Festival)
Rotterdam (NL)
20 Oct
Museum Dhondt D'Haenens - Festival van Vlaanderen histo
Deurle (BE)
17 Oct
Fundacion Carlos de Amberes
Madrid (ES)
30 Sep
org. Festival van Vlaanderen, historische steden
Buggenhout (BE)
29 Sep
CC De Werf
Aalst (BE)
06 May
Mechelen (BE)
03 Oct
CC Belgica
Dendermonde (BE)
07 Aug
San Francesco (org.Festival Philippe Herrewege)
Asciano (IT)
14 Feb
OLV kerk (org. CC De Spil + Musica Flandria)
Roeselare (BE)
13 Feb
CC De Adelberg
Lommel (BE)
04 Nov
Stadsschouwburg (org. 30CC)
Leuven (BE)
27 Aug
Kapel Elzenveld (org. Festival van Vlaanderen)
Antwerpen (BE)
11 May
Brugge (BE)
17 Jan
CC St-Niklaas
Sint-Niklaas (BE)
16 Nov
Brussel - Bruxelles (BE)
12 Oct
Stedelijk Museum
Amsterdam (NL)
11 Oct
Bergen (NL)
29 Jul
Concertgebouw (org. Brugge 2002 Culturele Hoofdstad (première)
Brugge (BE)