BL!NDMAN Akenkaai 2, B-1000 Brussels +32 (0)2 201 59 47


eric sleichim > concept and direction

remon fromont > light design
maarten beirens > music dramaturgy
bart bouckaert > repetitor

BL!NDMAN [sax]
koen maas > soprano saxophone, turntable
roeland vanhoorne > alto saxophone, turntable
piet rebel > tenor saxophone, turntable
raf minten > baritone saxophone, turntable

BL!NDMAN [drums]
tom de cock > percussion
yves goemaere > percussion
hannes nieuwlaet > percussion
ruben cooman > percussion

BL!NDMAN [strings]
floris uytterhoeven > violin, turntable
femke verstappen > violin, turntable
ine kuypers > viola, turntable
joyce juipers > cello, turntable

BL!NDMAN [vox]
griet de geyter > soprano
gunther vandeven > counter tenor
kevin skelton > tenor
hugo oliveira > bass

eric sleichim > E-guitar

roel das (i.s.m. Studio Champ d’action) > sound engineer
jo thielemans > stage technician
brecht beuselinck > light technician

kwadratur #2/transfo is a BL!NDMAN production, commissioned by Concertgebouw Brugge and the Happy New Festival Kortrijk (B), in coproduction with deSingel

BL!NDMAN is supported by the Arts Administration of the Ministry of the Flemish Community and the Flemish Community Commission of the Brussels-Capital Region. BL!NDMAN [sax] play Selmer Paris Saxophones.


In Kwadratur #2/Transfo once again Eric SLEICHIM explores with BL!NDMAN the limits of concert expercience. Pieces intertwine: known and unknown, familiar and unfamiliar fit together into a kaleidoscopic, sensual experience.

The central idea for this project is transformation. The grey zone between the safely marked out conventions and categories becomes the playground of this performance. Musicians reach beyond the limits of their familiar instrument. Sound is molded into unreal, new elements. A changing flux of impulses, between light and dark, visual and audible, leads the audience to an intense, ever changing experience of space.



jonathan harvey > mortuos plango (1980) (electronics) 9’
eric sleichim > strange attractors (2009) (turntables, IR-beams, voices) 7’
riccardo nova > sequentia super beata viscera (1992) – arr. eric sleichim (violin, saxophonequartet, percussionquartet)
luc brewaeys > vogliamo inneggiare, module 1 (2009, new piece commissioned by BL!NDMAN) (tutti) 6’
thierry de mey > silence must be! (2002) (conductor and percussion) 5’
john zorn > cat o’ nine tails, part 1 (1988) (string quartet) 7’
heiner goebbels > stadt land fluss, part 1-2-3 – arr. eric sleichim (2001) (sax quartet & sampler) 10’
kaija saariaho > nuits, adieux (1991) (vocal quartet) 10’
tristan murail > vampyr (1984) (e-guitar) 7’
mayke nas > enjenoemthetliefde (2006) (vocal quartet & video) 4’
philip glass > contrary motion (1969) (tutti) 15’

duration: ca. 80’ (without intermission)

première > 8 January 2010, Concertgebouw Bruges

BL!NDMAN: Kwadratur #2/Transfo

In Kwadratur #2/Transfo Eric Sleichim and BL!NDMAN return to the formula of ‘20×20’, the concert with which BL!NDMAN in 2008 celebrated its 20th birthday and that has subsequently been renamed Kwadratur #1/Globus.
This formula attempts to find for new connections, contrasts and a different listening-experience. The concert is no longer a series of pieces, played neatly one after the other, but a chain in which some pieces sound only partly or in combination/overlap with other pieces. Different compositions (acoustic and electronic, for 1 to 16 musicians) intertwine into one large movement. Thus the concert as a whole is conceived as an encompassing experience.
The experimental, conceptual, multi-disciplinary, theatrical, the exploration of limits and the search for enriching creative encounters are all elements that make up the core business of BL!NDMAN, even when the original saxophone quartet has expanded to a collective of 4 quartets: saxophone, percussion, vocal and string quartet. Although each quartet has its own repertoire, the collective offers the possibility to create programs with combinations of several quartets. ‘20×20’ was the first production featuring the complete BL!NDMAN collective on stage. Kwadratur #2/Transfo is the second time the four quartets join forces, becoming an unusual group of almost orchestral dimensions.

Like Kwadratur #1/Globus, Kwadratur #2/Transfo has been conceived as a hybrid alternation of different contrasting and intertwining compositions. Strings, voices and saxophones share the stage with turntables and infrared sensors. Classical playing techniques are confronted with alternative techniques. 16 musicians face electronic technology. In that respect, Kwadratur #2/Transfo is a continually transforming concert (or better: performance) : known and unknown, acoustic and electronic, light and dark intertwine into a carefully composed discourse.

Kwadratur #2/Transfo focuses on a central conceptual theme: the idea of ‘transformation’. Three types of transformation are present throughout the performance as major themes. First there is the transformation of darkness into light, and by extension of emptiness into matter. This element is explicitly present in the visual aspect of the performance, also thanks to the light design of Remon Fromont. Secondly there is the transformation of musicianship. One of BL!NDMAN’s basic principles has always been to expand the possibilities of an instrument, to incorporate all types of performance (and especially the more unconventional ones) into its musical language: to remove musicians from their usual instruments, featuring alternative playing techniques and an outright theatrical use of the physical aspect. The third theme then is also the most important one: the way in which technology transforms human possibilities into new hybrid forms – on all levels: artistic as well as in daily life.

The most important idea in this matter is the complex relationship between humans and machines, the way in which technology expands, transforms human possibilities on one hand, but includes the danger of wiping out human dimensions on the other hand. Thus electronics and technology are present in this program in all different forms: electronic manipulation of sounds, samplers, electric guitars, infra red sensors or turntables.
For that reason, Eric Sleichim also makes reference to the best example of an artistic movement that considered technology as the ultimate symbol of modern times: Italian futurism. The new pieces by Sleichim and Brewaeys (especially written for this production) make extensive use of the text of the Futurist Manifest.

Maarten Beirens, December 2009


‘Maybe it does sound complex, but in reality the collective succeeds to maintain an extremely transparent sound. With our without electronics, the performances are accessible. […] This concert was not a mind-game but an adventure, with threatening, fairylike, obsessive and poetic moments. […] a concert of high quality by an ensemble that temporarily has reached its peak.’ – Peter Vandeweerdt, Knack Blogt – 14 januari 2010

KWADRATUR #2 / TRANSFO played among others on the following locations:

AMSTERDAM (NL) - Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ
BRUGGE - concertgebouw
BRUSSEL - Kaaitheater
KORTRIJK/COURTRAI - stadsschouwburg
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BL!NDMAN       contact info

Gallaitstraat 76-78
1030 Schaarbeek, Belgium

general and artistic direction:
management:   M +32 473 29 98 91
production and communication:   M +32 473 71 50 70
technical production:

BL!NDMAN is supported by the Arts Administration of the Ministry of the Flemish Community and the Flemish Community Commission of the Brussels-Capital Region. BL!NDMAN [sax] play Selmer Paris Saxophones.