‘Watervalwater – Ecrits Bruts Oratorium’

CD front coverWatervalwater project teamCD back coverCD design

01 Hymne (0:56)
02 Qaqi (1:08)
03 Les Mots (3:22)
04 Je Suis Boeuf (2:12)
05 Huiskamer (0:44)
06 Rembrant (4:43)
07 Feest – Deel 1 (1:27)
08 Aproppo (2:43)
09 Teleologie (1:17)
10 Rawanda (2:53)
11 Feest – Deel 2 (1:42)
12 Blitzen Uber Die Bleef (1:32)
13 Gloria (2:44)
14 Liturgie Van Het Doopsel (5:51)
15 Liturgie Van Het Huwelijk (3:22)
16 Uitvaartliturgie (14:06)
17 Johnny In A (10:38)
18 Liefdeslied (1:20)

Total time 60:00
CD released by Ferri Records, Belgium, 2001

The Watervalwater project is the brainchild of Belgian stage director Wim De Wulf and composer Johan De Smet. It was performed at the Psychiatric Center Caritas in Melle, Belgium by a cast of volunteer patients as musicians and actors, supported by professional singers and musicians including the Flemish Radio Choir (see De Smet interview in Flemish). The texts are based on inpatients’ writings like Michel Dave, Jim Vanden Bossche, Frans Kruye, plus a pair of famous untaught writers, namely Adolf Wölfli and Vaclav Nijinski, mostly sung in Flemish with the occasional French and German. Johan De Smet is a neo-classical composer who was involved in a few weird projects along the years, especially setting to music the Marc Sleen’s Nero comic strip in 1984 and the silly Kamagurka comic strips with Peter Van Heirseele (see here). Also a member of The Simpletones, De Smet is best known for his stage music for Flanders theater companies. The music he composed for Watervalwater is contemporary classical music for small orchestra, singers and choir with echoes of Darius Milhaud’s Boeuf Sur Le Toit, Hans Werner Henze’s L’Upupa and Policcino, or Adolf Wölfli’s Gelesen Und Vertont 1978 LP (download here). I guess you’ll have to trust my word on this one, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the references above, but this is actually an amazing project. The weirdness of the whereabouts only enhances the special quality of this unique event.

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