Pendulum Choir — Cod.Act’s latest concept—performance awarded the Grand Prize at the 16th Japan Media Arts Festival in 2012 — is an original choral piece for 9 A Cappella voices and 18 hydraulic jacks. The choir stands on tilting platforms, constituting a living, sonorous body. That body expresses itself through various physical states. Its plasticity varies at the mercy of its sonority. It varies between abstract sounds, repetitive sounds, and lyrical or narrative sounds. The bodies of the singers and their voices play with and against gravity. They brush and avoid each other creating subtle vocal polyphonies. Or, supported by electronic sounds, they break their cohesion and burst into lyrical flight or fold up into an obsessional and dark ritual. The organ travels from life to death in a robotic allegory where the technological complexity and the lyricism of the moving bodies combine into a work with Promethean accents.
Michel Décosterd (b. 1969 in Le Locle, Switzerland) — after having received a diploma of architecture at the Engineering School of Biel (1994), he worked as an architect in Berlin and Weimar (1994—96). After founding the group Cod.Act with André Décosterd, he is active in plastic arts and in architecture, developing and constructing sound machines.
Under the label Cod.Act, André and Michel Décosterd combine their know—how and interests. They develop performances, interactive installations, sound sculptures and kinetic objects that focus on sound and movement and their possible interaction.
Their works have been exhibited internationally, gaining prestigious awards and nominations: Premio Transitio_MX 04 in Mexico City (2011), Grand Prize 14th Japan Media Arts Festival (Japan, 2010), CYNEART 2010 Award (Dresden), Distinction Award at Ars Electronica (Linz, 2010), Culture Award of the Neuchâtel Cantonal Bank (Neuchâtel, 2009), Japan Media Art Festival, division Interactive Arts, Metropolitan Museum of Art, (Tokyo, 2004), International Media Art Award (ARTE — Süddeutsche Rundfunk, ZKM Karlsruhe, 2004).
Nicolas Farine (b. in Montfaucon, Switzerland) — Swiss conductor, pianist and trumpeter. After obtaining, at the age of 19, a professional piano diploma and a virtuosity diploma for trumpet at the Conservatoire de Neuchâtel, Nicolas Farine continued to polish his skills at the University of Montreal. Until obtaining a doctorate in music in Marc Durand’s class for piano soloist, he studied several aspects of his art: not only solo piano but also musicology and conducting. He polished his skills in the United States, Canada and Austria under masters such as Leon Fleisher, André Laplante, Marek Yablonsky, Venislav Yankoff and for conducting with Otto-Werner Müller (Juilliard School), Salvador Mas Conde (Musikakademie Vienna) and Charles Bruck (Pierre Monteux School, USA). His recitals and concerts have taken him to Canada, South America, England, France, Austria and Ukraine, where he conducted the National Orchestra of Ukraine. He is founder of the Jeune Opéra Compagnie that he directs with François Cattin. Together they have created operas and a professional choir of 16 singers, “Les Voix”.
Conception, construction and musical composition: Cod.Act. Michel Décosterd, André Décosterd
Performance: Jeune Opéra Compagnie — “Les Voix”
Direction: Nicolas Farine
Tenors: Wolfgang Behrenz, Alain Bertschy, Michel Mülhauser
Baritones: Davide Autieri, Sacha Michon, Christophe Gindraux
Basses: Francesco Biamonte, Michael Kreis, Christophe Mironneau
Technical collaboration: Jacques Décosterd, François Bommottet