The Pandemic Project :: Strijdom van der Merwe – Past Lives

“In Aboriginal song lines, walking these paths and observing, a knowledgeable person is able to navigate across the land. Every century a large shift occurs in the constellation of these lines and the dramatic change into the unknown. The Covid-19 Pandemic has layered itself over the entire surface of the earth, decreasing the population, changing the value system of lives, economies and establishing new value systems of energy lines. First was the land always the land, we have to adhere to the lines and following the songs”.

Sarah Hopkins is a unique Australian composer-performer, highly acclaimed for her visionary music and inspiring performances for cello, harmonic overtone singing and choir.

Past Life Melodies is “a profound musical work which blends European antiquity with Aboriginal songlines and then transports one to Nepal, the roof of the world, where the monks are chanting”. (Stuart Phillpot). This iconic piece embraces several vocal techniques not traditionally used in Western choral music, namely open-throated chant singing, Aboriginal inspired chant and harmonic overtone singing.

Let us listen to how Van der Merwe connects song and art with the UJ Choir.