It would be boring just to think the doable. I'm not too much interested in everyday routine, so I let it alone and soar up into higher, airier, more megalomaniac and transcendent realms.
Thus Afghan tank general Dostum inspired me to Tiefflug (2011) and the Egyptian scavanger god to Schakal (2015). Samuel Taylor Coleridge's lunatic-superhuman poem »Kubla Khan« put me up to sacred river ALPH's meanders mazy mad & measureless (2007/09), Emperor Otto III to stupor mundi unconcealed (2006), and the secret service of the same name to Mandala Mossad (2008).
The music is too loud, too fast, too difficult and too complex. It proliferates wildly in all directions, desintegrates, strands, bleats, and reaches for the stars again – and so do we… In my diploma thesis Der verlorene Ehrensäbel (2009/10), I investigate theoretically how the virtuoso achieves to thrill us.
Groove & Rubato
I like rhythm. Unfortunately, in contemporary music rhythm tends not to be too much fun. How can I inspire musicians not to count like robots four quarters or thirteen sixteenths, but to play music straight from the heart? To perform the same gallant turns, the abrupt stops, the rushing capers we love so much in Schumann's, Johann Strauss's or Puccini's music?
In Zirkelspielchen (2011) und Teufelsthriller (2011/12), I try to develop a special kind of notation for rubato. In Veitstanz (2013), I distort Viennese Waltz and Bavarian March rhythms till insanity. And in Best Schumann Ever (2009/10), I constructed a computer-aided, highly refined, rubato-loaded Schumann interpretation which no sane pianist could achieve.
Of course, improvisation isn't spontaneous. Well, only bad improvisation is spontaneous. My various improvisation projects seek to combine the impetus of the moment with the distance of reflection.
In Indra Medusa Caligula 0 (2008/09), I explore the combination of different formal scales on the piano, in Indra Medusa Caligula I (2007) on the hyper-piano. In Die fantastische Musik, die jeder Mensch hören kann, aber nicht aufzuschreiben vermag, two viola players and two pianists improvise – either guided or freely – around Mozart's Jupiter Symphony.
Electronics, interaction, performance
The performance situation, too, has to be transcended. I like unsecured performing situations that force musicians and listeners to leave their comfort zone.
In my piece Heroes of Feedback (2012), two musical bravers – trumpet and percussion – fight against the threat of extermination by loudly whistling loudspeakers. Computer and performers interact live, the rules of the game change continuously, as well as the emerging music – and the musicians run on adrenalin. I've done a theoretical exploration of this piece here.
In Messer Engel Atem Kling (2011), a (failing) rehearsal and a (virtuoso) concert get mixed. In NeandertalerRocketUniversalmusik (2009/10), I allow myself – playing the doublepiano while bawling, screaming & wailing – to degenerate into an ape. And my festival schwelbrand (since 2011, www.schwelbrand.de) melts pieces of various composers into an acoustically and optically coherent performative-theatrical-liturgical hyper-happening.
Music theatre and speech
Surreal-fascinating worlds between language game and dream logic, where nothing is comprehensible and still everything plausible – that's my aim for my music theatre pieces.
My half hour short-opera orlando (2011–13) oscillates between heroism, identity lab, and desperation – just bad that the hero isn't in the mood to take part in the play. The one hour one-man performance Sprachschmelze 1 0 0 1 leads the protagonist into a complexly interlaced, selfdestructive vortex between reality and fiction, stage and auditorium, violence and love, history and myth. The performative concert piece Die Sprache der Jongleure (2007/08) explores the mysteries of the parataxis – from letter sequences to ascending gods, from biblical genealogical lists to burnt peoples.
Yes, I've also written quiet pieces. Well, at least with substantial passages in piano or pianissimo, even with half and whole notes. Among these works are e.g. Die Häutung des Himmels (2016) with reverberating remote percussion, and Siebenkreiswerk (2008), a kind of quiet echo (with similar material) of my preceding piece Mandala Mossad.