When artists of the body meet artists of the voice

July saw swissnex in a frenzy of preparations to receive a unique group of students and artists as part of our Olympic program. We found ourselves looking for things like Russian swings and trampolines: only a few of the number of requirements for the performance, which was to inaugurate the House of Switzerland on 1 August. This project was conceived by the Cod’Act brothers who not only composed the music but also designed the catapults, which were key in contributing to the characteristics of this project: a combination of classical music, electronics, and human ballistics. However, once the concept was ready the two brothers needed the help from the talented singers from HEMU Lausanne as well as from professional acrobats. In Switzerland they found this help in the form of acrobats from Lezarti’cirque from Sainte-Croix and in Brazil, we were asked to identify a fitting partner.

dddd Charged with this demanding task the research began and soon we stumbled across the Escola Nacional de Circo: a public institution, which educates future circus artists. The manager of the school, Carlos Vianna, was convinced after a 5-minute conversation and thus began what became one of the smoothest cooperation in our recent memory. After weeks of preparation and many emails exchanged the singers and acrobats finally met on the swissnex terrace where haltingly first words were exchanged in a mixture of English, Spanish French and Portuguese. After a few days it was clear though that despite language barriers the language of the arts, of music and of acrobatics, is the same around the world and the group of students became inseparable.

After a week of repetitions and a lot of holding our breaths watching the acrobats flying through the air catapulted by the machines constructed by Michel Decosterd the Swiss-Brazilian team was ready for the big opening on 1 August, the Swiss national day. Following the national anthems of Brazil and Switzerland the Orbital Choir presented a less traditional and more cutting-edge side of Switzerland being the perfect example of the intersection between education, arts and innovation.

This project showed perfectly how Switzerland and Brazil can learn from each other and exchange knowledge and we at swissnex Brazil are crossing our fingers to see the Orbital Choir once again. Maybe this time in Switzerland?

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   Malin Borg, Deputy CEO and Academic Relations swissnex Brazil

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