Maya Verlaak (commissioned by HERMESensemble)


Esther-Elisabeth Rispens: vocals
Karin de Fleyt: flute
Esther Coorevits: viola
Pieter-Jan Vercammen: guitar
Bert De Rycke: piano
Wim Pelgrims: percussion


Amit Palgi


Richard Glover

How do the environment and the people we meet influence our decisions and our lives? How have encounters had major impacts on our own life cycle? The butterfly effect refers to the sensitive system where any minimal deviation can change the whole system exponentially. The name comes from a metaphor Edward Lorenz used in 1961 to explain the effect: how the wings of a butterfly can cause a tornado months later.

I use the interplay of musicians as a metaphor for the system and thus also as a metaphor for everyone’s life cycle. The composition is structured as a sensitive system in which every small action of a musician can have big consequences. They are so interconnected that the action of one musician affects everyone. The musicians are monitored through a self-built computer system. It analyses every minimal activity of each musician and when certain activity is marked as deviation, the whole system undergoes a development/construction and all musicians have to follow new instructions to rebalance the new whole.

The complexity of this system is depicted through sound but also through movement. With the help of choreographer Amit Palgi, the musicians also move on stage to play and influence the system. Amit Palgi and I work together to form a communicative whole.

Composer/researcher Dr Richard Glover will accompany us in the early stages of the working process to assist us as specialists in shaping the system.