Sky Burial in Paris. Photo: Julien Benhamou (detail) View full image

‘Profound’ Sky Burial reviewed

Mat Collishaw’s Sky Burial has won excellent reviews in its performance last week in Paris at La Seine Musicale, with Insula Orchestra and choral ensemble Accentus conducted by Laurence Equilbey

‘Collishaw’s visual design picks out the menace in Fauré’s score and in essence amplifies it, making the listener more aware of the darkness in the music, ramping up its emotional impact as a result… It is a visceral experience and at times one I find profoundly moving.’

Thoroughly Good

‘The effect of the film on our perception of Fauré Requiem – a piece almost achingly, cosily, familiar – was remarkable. Normally considered one of the ‘softer’ requiems (compared with Verdi’s gargantuan effort!), this event added whole new layers… The arc of the film is simple, but the ‘weaving’ of images is what gives the film its profundity. A massively moving, profound experience, and a true melding of the heard (the Requiem) and the seen (Collishaw’s film).’

Seen and Heard International

‘Mat Collishaw’s video intensifies the dramatic dimension of the Requiem. Its dystopian character contrasts with the serenity of Fauré’s music. The work is contrasted: the flight images of birds and rivers evoke the harmony of nature. The great tower, of which only one carcass remains, suggests a recent misfortune. It contrasts with the beauty of the landscapes. The camera enters the rooms of the dying. It’s impressive, the spectator touches death very closely as we rarely represent it in our societies… The harmonious and contrasting union of the Requiem and the film gives great emotional intensity to this evening. The listeners were all frozen, impressed. A concert that questions us about our relationship with nature and confronts us with our mortal destiny. As rarely. But with the beauty of the music of Gounod and Fauré as a consolation.’

Toute La Culture

‘The film is a work of baroque sensibility, both shockingly beautiful and liberating, injecting Fauré’s masterpiece with a contemporary grittiness.’

Artmuse London

Future dates

Eivind Aadland conducts Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra in Sky Burial in Hobart on 11 March as part of the Ten Days on The Island Festival, and Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra on 5 May in Kilden Performing Arts Centre.

Watch a trailer for Sky Burial