Sounds of Absence

trajectory of music theatrical performances and installations

Concept, direction: Falk Hübner

Dramaturgy: Mart-Jan Zegers

With: Frederik Croene, Bauwien van der Meer, Juan Parra/Maarten Zaagman, Heiner Gulich and Milana Zaric

Co-produced by Productiehuis Rotterdam, Operadagen Rotterdam, November Music, Lectoraat Theatrale Maakprocessen (HKU), DocARTES

Project management: Elena Hanselaar

The trajectory includes the following works: WastelandJukeboxThespian Play and Living Room.

Frederik Croene in “Wasteland”
“With a small group we are guided through the catacombs of the Rotterdam theatre: By a singing voice that sounds different in every space: reverb, small, echo, dull, large.” (Elly Scheele)


It is natural for human beings to connect, and nothing is as natural as the binding of human beings with music. Our connection to the sounds surrounding us goes without saying, and the connection of music and the ones who are producing this music is taken for granted; musicians are playing music. Aren’t they?

Bauwien van der Meer as
Bauwien van der Meer as “host”

With the Sounds of Absence trajectory Falk Hübner develops a series of experimental stage works and installations that tear apart this most natural relationship between musicians and their most valued medium, music. Where usually in music theatre the music and its mediator – the musician – are one, the performances and installations of this series represent very concrete interventions in this extremely intimate relation that musicians have with their instruments, and that human beings have with music. By means of this short circuit, this amputation, the musicians are thought as metaphors for the isolated human being in our contemporary society. Each of the works provides a different point of view on this fragmentation and isolation, and connects it to social and everyday experiences.

Maarten Zaagman in “Jukebox”

The performances and installations of this trajectory are staged as a route through a building. This building can be a theatre, an old factory, a museum gallery or other types of buildings. Each work populates a separate space, which could be an entrance hall, stairs that connect different floors of a building or a traditional theatre space.

Heiner Gulich in “Thespian Play”

The series is the result of the recent years of Falk Hübner’s work, and summarises his artistic activities between 2009-2013. It is closely related to his research on musicians as theatrical performers and to ‘take away’ elements of the musician’s profession in performance. In creating these performative works he developed his research further and gave shape to challenging, innovating ways of creating theatrical work with musicians.

Milana Zaric in “Living Room”

“The greatest gift is the man sitting on the ground in between all his machines and cables. He putters with his cables, amplifiers, laptop and an empty Palm beer bottle, until he has found the right sound. Then he walks away and lets us listen.” (Elly Scheele)

Performance history

8.11.2013, November Music, Theater Artemis, Den Bosch (NL), 19:00
8.11.2013, November Music, Theater Artemis, Den Bosch (NL), 15:00
2.6.2013, Operadagen Rotterdam, Schouwburg Rotterdam, 14:00
1.6.2013, Operadagen Rotterdam, Schouwburg Rotterdam, 19:00
1.6.2013, Operadagen Rotterdam, Schouwburg Rotterdam, 16:00
31.5.2013, Operadagen Rotterdam, Schouwburg Rotterdam, 21:00
31.5.2013, Operadagen Rotterdam, Schouwburg Rotterdam, 19:00 (PREMIERE)