Sunday, 5. June 2011, 23:03 - 23:45, Ö1


1) „The Little Faust“

by Arsenije Jovanovic (9‘38‘‘)

2) „Les petits riens“ 

by Chantal Dumas (33‘21‘‘)


1) „The Little Faust“

by Arsenije Jovanovic

With this short radio piece, drawing on passages from Goethe's Faust, the renowned artist, director and composer Arsenije Jovanovic recently participated at the Prix Marulic. Organised by the Croatian Radio, the competition focuses on radio drama and art dealing with old literature.

Arsenije Jovanovic provides a user  guide for „The Little Faust“:

„In the sphere of art, explanations and interpretations can only cause damage sometimes.

The hard logic of rational analysts more often than not annihilates the hidden essence of poetry, music, abstract painting...

Deciphering metaphors is not recommended. If a poet intended his poems to be clearer he would have made them so.

The understanding of music is not the same as the comprehension of Archimedes' Principle. Much would have been given for Beckett's explanation of his "Waiting for Godot" but it would surely have lessened the impact of the work, it would never have achieved the same success. Hamlet’s ambiguity, to be or not to be, is as meaningful as the many hidden or unhidden meanings in his monologues.

Once, I had a nightmarish experience with an actor who repeatedly demanded I explain some absurd relations between the character in the play where the very absurdity was the author’s essential goal. He was an intelligent educated guy but he was missing the most elemental thing for an artist – the gift to understand what is not understandable.

The Little Faust is not hiding any big secrets – by the way, my belief is that there are no big secrets even in Godot or in Hamlet. The vagueness and inscrutability work in the function of the drama’s mechanism.

Isn’t this the case with understanding of God?

This little piece of sound art, name it whatever you like, is composed from excerpted fragments of Goethe’s pyramid, not to become any kind of little pyramid by itself afterward. Rather, more like a tiny little grain of sand, rolled out from the large stone to make it’s own life in the darkness of a catacomb space where the author spent hours playing with a handful of verses and words, their echoes, sounds of one's steps and drops of water.

These were multiplied endlessly, creating enigmatic new contents.

It’s left up to the audience, to each listener separately, to develop his/her own story - If she or he does want this mental conversion from the cryptic to the obvious to occur - producing re-experienced images in pictures or acoustic appearances or inevitably both.

Synaesthesia experience is not exclusive privilege of extreme synaesthetes, The Little Faust could also be regarded as a movie miniature with sound or even a silent film.“

2) „Les petits riens“

by Chantal Dumas (33‘21‘‘)

„Les petits riens are those subtle sounds, songs too soft to catch our attention, or so mundane that we no longer perceive them. They are also the sounds of microcosms, such as the insect world, and of our high-tech work environments. They are perhaps also the sounds of reminiscences, mental loops of melodic fragments audible to ourselves alone, or the caress of sounds past, presenting themselves now and again.“

Produced by Deutschlandradio Kultur, the piece by Chantal Dumas, a Canadian artist and composer, received the Prix Bohemia in 2010 in the category „Radio art – Sound Composition by a Radio“. The Prix Bohemia is a radio award, presented by the Czech Radio. The jury decided to award Dumas for her musical languages, which bears evidence of alternative use of acoustic means in combination with known and well-established radio genres.