Limbo Viktoriia Vitrenko
(Edited by Sven-Ingo Koch)
Dedicated to Maria Kalesnikava
How are you?
A simple question to which one cannot give a simple answer. A question to which one does not want to hear an answer. Aquestion to which I have not had an answer for over six months.
I read the news of the »superstar of the year«, the corona virus, of perpetual lockdowns driving me to despair, of theburst democracy bomb in Belarus, and spin in political debates with those vultures who want to profit from world unrest. In the vain search for an answer. I feel torn and wonder what words, what music could be used to describe thisstate of affairs.
At the same time, the ongoing development of the current pandemic forces me to listen to my innermost thoughts and to confront myself.
And what do I find there? On the one hand, it is an unbelievable calm–so calm that it borders on breathless–on the other hand, a screaming longing for life and vitality. Yet I sense that it is precisely in this borderline state that new processes are born. Belarus. What courageous people! Where do they find their strength to remain strong in the face of a brutal regime? And my good friend? In the midst of all this, imprisoned for six months now. Alone, imprisoned, yetnot broken.
How are you?
I have a great urge to shout, but I’m not allowed to–new curfews have just been imposed, and my neighbours always bang on the wall when I play music. And so I crawl back to my electric piano, put on the headphones and try to feel my way in. Chopin doesn’t work–too romantic, Rachmaninoff–too pompous, Bach–already so many dead since thebeginning of the pandemic.
I’m looking for something simple, only a few chords (can new music do that at all?) and the voice floats unintentionally right along with it. But I hum softly so that no one hears me–my desolation is currently one of the whole culture.
On the other hand, I feel like a singer-songwriter, a cabaret artist or–even better–like a queen who has the stage to herself. What a pity that there is no one here to watch me do it. It’s quite virtuoso to play and sing at the same time. Even if–or precisely because–it is so »simple«, it comes from the complexity of New Music. I look inside myself, into a place between liveliness somewhere out there and fear of death in here, into a mysterious place–a limbo.
How are you?
And I try to understand this limbo. There it is–a point where I no longer feel one or the other. Rather, I feel both at thesame time. Alive and dead. And at this moment I have the feeling of being Schrödinger’s cat, which may not be alive and yet is alive. As an observer, however, I cannot understand in which of these states I am at the moment. Locked up in this »in-between world«, the idea for a new project emerges.