LEUCHTER (from: briefly groping trash)


Program Note

„Leuchter is part of a series of compositions which I concepted and wrote in the beginning of the nineties – portrait-shots of living and known by name persons: Leuchter, Cayabyab, Zuendel and Dienel, all with the undertitle (aus: kurz im Müll gestochert) / (from: briefly groping trash). In parallel to my own researches the British documentary filmmaker Steven Trombley investigated in the USA with the focus on „killing in the people’s name“. Fred A. Leuchter and Dr. Cayabyab are employed as technician and physician in the American state execution-industry. Thomas Dienel is, after a career as member of FDJ/SED in the GDR, one of the most bustling persons of the East German rightwing-extremism, who has worked also as a confidential informant of the intelligence service. In 1988 Fred A. Leuchter was commissioned by the arraigned holocaust-denier German-Canadian Ernst Zuendel to write the so-called Leuchter-Report refuting the extermination machinery in Auschwitz and Majdanek. On the one hand, I was interested in the state and public appreciated killing of convicted in the USA, on the other hand in the circumstance, that the most subversive right-wing extremists are linked to it indirectly and directly. I designed for each of these persons a plateau and created a documental portrait situation, which I photographed – in sounds. This process of transfer interested me most as composer in this series of works, next to the content: on one side to depicture reality like Caravaggio or Gerhard Richter, on the other side to evoke transformation and recoding in the eyes and ears of the recipients. Among others, I pursued the question: How precisely can the sounds of my musical grammar and syntax figure reality and its subtexts? And I tried to transfer a „technique“ from art to music – whereby music works more subversive in the transfer process of musicians and audience than art. Like for Gerhard Richter or Caravaggio or Goya the title, that is: the direct designation of which or whom I am portraying, is of the greatest importance for me.“
Helmut Oehring

About Helmut Oehring

The composer, director, choreographer and author Helmut Oehring was born in 1961 in East Berlin. As hearing child of deafmute parents he considers German sign language his mother tongue, as…