Rope Dance: Light-Footed Music for All and None


As a result of the 2016 North Sea Composition Assignment, I wrote a 75-minute suite for bassoon, drums, bass, piano and clarinets. The idea was to combine this music with Nietzsche’s parable of the rope dancer from Thus Spoke Zarathustra. I recorded this music in January 2020; it will be released in the Spring of 2021.

For Nietzsche, dance stands for freedom. It stands for a suspension of old habits and thoughts and not getting stuck with them. Nietzsche wants us to dance in this metaphorical sense: we need to dance in order to ‘become who we are’. We should dance when we play music, but also when we write, think, speak, etcetera. A rope dancer stands for someone who is not afraid to go different places and to take risks. His feet are light: he loves the unknown and the distant future – he loves his fate.

Rope Dance features Bram van Sambeek (bassoon), Martijn Vink (drums), Clemens van der Feen (bass), Bram de Looze (piano) and myself (clarinets/compositions).

Graphic design slides: Lucas van Eck