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BL!NDMAN [hybrid]

With his penchant for collaboration and multidisciplinarity, Eric Sleichim conceived the idea of BL!NDMAN [hybrid], a groundbreaking combination of musical powerhouses. Surprising encounters, breaking rules and endless adventure are at the heart of this quartet form. In BL!NDMAN [hybrid], the artistic director of BL!NDMAN gathers exciting musicians around him for a project-based quartet. A fragile process that embodies musical life as an adrift, enthusiastic, creative but transient activity. A contemporary polyphony from diverse artistic worlds. A unique exchange of sound-rich ideas by Eric Sleichim with his contemporaries.

The first BL!NDMAN [hybrid] quartet featured Sleichim, Reut Rivka (soprano), Osama Abdulrasol (qanun) and Etienne Plumer (percussion) for the opening of the exhibition Heilige Plaatsen, Heilige Boeken (Sacred PLaces, Sacred Books) in Antwerp in 2014 and the tour Helse Tijden: Pursuit of Happiness by Behoud de Begeerte in 2015. For the second edition, Sleichim created the performance BEYOND/BEHIND, inspired by Russian futurism, together with vocal jack-of-all-trades Claron McFadden, the adventurous and virtuoso cellist Jörg Brinkmann and turntable wizard Matthew Wright. A third BL!NDMAN [hybrid] followed in 2015 for Ivo van Hove’s performance Kings of War, as a trombone quartet joined by a DJ and countertenor to perform English consort music, among other things.

The fourth BL!NDMAN [hybrid] quartet was created for the performance Network, based on the well-known 1970s film, directed by Ivo van Hove and starring Bryan Cranston. Sleichim composed the soundtrack and the foursome Matthew Wright, Tom Challenger, Pete Harden and Kit Downes perform them live on stage on laptops, keyboard and live electronics. The new initiative Parliament of Angels (2023-2027) explores the paths for a future fifth edition of BL!NDMAN [hybrid]. A further embrace of unfamiliar and challenging musical encounters.