Bardo is music for electronics and percussion composed for TAKE Dance Company's "There and Here", which premiered on March 26, 2015, at the Schimmel Center at Pace University, NYC.
In December 2014, the choreographer Takehiro Ueyama commissioned me to compose music for his dance, the theme of which was life and afterlife. I had lost a couple of family members in the previous years and had started working on a piece that reflected my experience with the dead. Bardo means "intermediate state" in Tibetan.
In July 2012, I was granted a month-long residency at Headlands Center for the Arts in California. Every morning I walked in the foggy hills overlooking the Golden Gate bridge to my studio in an old Army barrack. I worked alone until the sun went down. I had no phone, no internet, providing the ideal environment to communicate with the dead, as well as for recording drums. After returning to NYC, I started recording the modular synthesizer as the otherworldly texture for the piece.
For the dance performance, my task as composer/performer was to create a sonic space to add another dimension to the choreography: articulating anticipation for changes; exposing motion; or providing a sense of liberation. What you can listen to here is the edited version of the original 70-minute piece that I reworked.
I would like to thank Brian Karl, Headlands Center for the Arts, Takehiro Ueyama, Yuko Takebe, Lauren Parrish & the dancers of TAKE Dance Company for their support and inspiration.
In Brooklyn, NY, March 2016
A short version of the video "There and Here" by Yuko Takebe is available here: