​Sub category

Large Orchestra




11 minutes




First performed

27 October 2017, Estonia Concert Hall, by the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Baldur Brönnimann

Program notes:

The main axis of the work is formed by intersecting lines, which are presented in the work by glissando lines. The intersecting sounds running into each other form a kind of fractal when viewed from a distance – as bearing points of the structure, presenting cyclicality, verticality.
As well important in this work is the perspective and its changes.
An important example of this is, for example, glissando, because it has a quality that is somehow paradoxically still, but has the quality of movement as well.
Disappearance or vanishing point describes the idea of the piece. Interestingly, the idea of ​​a vanishing point came to me when I first got acquainted with different forms of Japanese theater, and especially with the choreography based on abrupt changes in movement perspective, the sudden changes of still movements. So in an addition to the intersecting lines, the gesture or motif of sudden appearance and disappearance is one of the most important aspects of the piece.
The concrete heading for the piece – Punctum concursūs in prospectu – is very ambivalent and especially, when it is need to translate it to another language. Because in every language it tends to give a bit wider, narrower or even different meaning. 
In Latin, for example, in the 16th century, the astronomer, philosopher and mathematician Guidobaldo del Monte described a certain optical phenomenon where the projections of parallel lines in 2D space intersect in 3D space, with the term punctum concursūs. 
In the most direct translation from Latin to Estonian, the term could meaningfully be something like ‘the point where the two lines meet’. 
In German, such an optical term is called fluchtpunkt, which could then be translated into Estonian as a disappearance point, with a wider field of meaning and captures the idea of ​​the work better than in Latin.
The term for field of vision in different languages ​​also gives different meanings. The term prospectu in Latin seems to have a narrower meaning than in Estonian and English, but at the same time, the the perspective as such, seemed to be very appropriate.
It is also important that there is a peaceful coexistence of different tunings in the work.

“We have entered into / are in the process of entering completely new situations, where the old – perhaps at one time even extremely avant-garde mechanisms and methodologies – well-acquired techniques and games no longer work if they have no substantive justification. Empty forms can be technically complex and blinding in terms of their virtue; however, if they are not imbued with spirit and soul, there is nothing left to do with them. The quality of a musical piece and performance is determined by the type of consciousness with which the creator and performer approach the music. The form (cf. also reductionist research), which has been developed in its own way to completeness and perfection, is exhausted and transcended by a higher consciousness, which liberates the spirit from its hardened form. The spirit is allowed to flow, and the obsolete structures that have become obstructions are washed away.

In my imagination, the new works by Elis Vesik and Helena Tulve – played at the opening and closing concerts, respectively – formed an inspiring arc over the festival, radiating the courage to enter a new unknown world (in the above-mentioned key). Upon first hearing Elis Vesik’s work for a large symphony orchestra (consisting of four groups) and recording Punctum concursūs in prospectu / Vanishing Point in the Field of Vision, I immediately perceived an archetypal force, one that seems to have appeared in this quality for the first time in Estonian music in Helena Tulve’s orchestral work Sula (Thaw) (1999). But before taking a closer look at this archetypal force, I present a quote from the annotation to Elis Vesik’s new work: “As a composer, I am interested by what affects the ability to be conscious in the present moment and to observe everything around you – silence and noise in their various facets, micro-events in sounds and the musical process, because paradoxically, it seems that the more the process of creating music is connected to the music itself and musical reality, the greater the opportunity it provides to reflect on one’s surrounding existence and its patterns through insights. I look for different structures and harmonies in the hope that there will be some recognition of the cyclical breathing or peace of life.” In the November 2017 issue of Muusika, the composer writes at length about the structural, mathematical, optical, musical, and philosophical background of her work, which may give the impression that her method of writing music is super-intellectual in nature. In reality, especially after listening to Vanishing Point in the Field of Vision, it seems that Elis Vesik possesses a talent where structural/mathematical/theoretical thinking are all very well balanced with intuitive creativity and sensitive openness to the essence of life. Reading Elis Vesik’s article ‘On the Perception of Time in Music’ and listening to her new work, associations were formed with composers who are characterised by a powerful synthesis of intuitive and intellectual origins, such as Tüür’s vector thinking.”