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Blue Work


No Man's Land

Year:  2016   ·  Duration:  1h 25m

Year:  2016
Duration:  1h 25m

Composer:   John Psathas

Films, Audio & Samples

John Psathas introduces No ...

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John Psathas: No Man's Land...

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Review: Rachel Hyde reviews...

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About

The No Man's Land Project is an 80-minute live cinematic concert, and a standalone feature film; a deeply moving multi-media work that spans generations, cultures and beliefs, and reflects on the devastating impact and futility of war. Commissioned from acclaimed New Zealand composer John Psathas, The No Man's Land Project was premiered as a centrepiece of New Zealand's First World War commemorations in 2016. 150 musicians descended from opposing forces of the Great War and filmed on battlefields around the world were projected alongside a live, seven-piece international ensemble. The musicians, both live and virtual, performed as one global orchestra to create an exhilarating visual and musical experience. The No Man's Land Project is, above all else, an unashamed commitment to optimism; a statement to nations who currently find themselves at war. Even at our worst, humanity and empathy continue to survive.


Why musicians travelling in the footsteps of soldiers 100 years ago? If we could go back in time and say to those on the battlefields "guess what happens here in 100 years" -- would they believe us? If we said the same thing to those fighting now, would they believe us? Would we believe ourselves? We now wage war on our own species. But even at our worst, humanity and empathy continue to survive. Our story culminates in acts of kindness: soldiers from opposing sides, 'enemies', offering each other water, a cigarette, a shoulder to lean on. Even -- incredibly -- in what is surely one of the most bizarre and dangerous inventions of the human mind: a place called no man's land.

-- John Psathas --



Contents note

I. Journey
II. Oh Beloved - Shellshock
III. Soul of Mine
IV. Anthem
V. Postlude (Lamentos)


Performance history

02 Mar 2016: Performed by seven musicians from New Zealand, Greece and Poland backed by projections of hundreds of pre-recorded musicians at the Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington.

04 Mar 2016: Performed by seven musicians from New Zealand, Greece and Poland backed by projections of hundreds of pre-recorded musicians at the Auckland Town Hall.

08 Mar 2016: Performed by seven musicians from New Zealand, Greece and Poland backed by projections of hundreds of pre-recorded musicians at Baycourt in Tauranga.

10 Mar 2016: Performed by seven musicians from New Zealand, Greece and Poland backed by projections of hundreds of pre-recorded musicians at the Napier Municipal Theatre.

12 Mar 2016: Performed by seven musicians from New Zealand, Greece and Poland backed by projections of hundreds of pre-recorded musicians at the Royal Whanganui Opera House.

18 Mar 2016: Performed by seven musicians from New Zealand, Greece and Poland backed by projections of hundreds of pre-recorded musicians at the WOMAD, TSB Bowl of Brooklands, New Plymouth.

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