* Silver Eddy Award, Pro-Am Freestyle (CRIFF, Cedar Rapids, 2012)
* Award of Merit (The Accolade Competition, 2011)
* 2012: Cedar Rapids Independent Film Festival (Cedar Rapids)
* 2011: Reelfest DC (Washington, DC)
* 2011: "Kinoklub" Screening at Kinoteatr Kyiv (Kiev, Ukraine)
* 2011: NXNE, Toronto
* 2010: Canton Palace International Film Festival (Canton, OH)
This experimental non-fiction music video was shot in Kiev, Ukraine, in early 2010 during the recording sessions of SARMATICA's inaugural album THE LVIV LUTE.
The film situates us in the complex visual and audio space of a basement recording studio in Kiev’s famous Pechersk Monastery. In close contact with musicians and recording engineer, it explores the disjunction between what we see and what we hear, between live and playback, between visual and audio tracks, and by extension between the film and its spectators.
The title quotes the recording engineer’s call to take the headphones off one ear – a gesture that leaves the musician in a divided audio space: playback in one ear, his or her live playing in the other.
The music featured in the film is a crossover between 16th century lute music (from the “Lviv Lute Tablature,” a manuscript that survives in the university library in Lviv, Ukraine) and Ukrainian folk styles. The artistic director of the group is Russian-American lutenist Oleg Timofeyev, arrangements are by Danylo Pertsov and Oleg Timofeyev.
Filmed, edited and directed by Sabine I. Gölz
To purchase a DVD of "Take Off One Ear!", please click on the "purchase films" tab on the left.
SARMATICA's inaugural CD "THE LVIV LUTE" has been released by Dorian Sono Luminus and is available here: .
“Take Off One Ear!” began in Vadym Borysenko’s recording studio in a dungeon-like basement space in Kiev’s ancient Pechersk Monastery. There, the Ukrainian group “Sarmatica,” under the direction of Russian/American lutenist Oleg Timofeyev, was recording a crossover album, based on a little-known lute manuscript. Their music brings together disparate elements of Western European Renaissance, Ukrainian folk styles, as well as other traditions. Visually, this “dungeon” bathes the musicians in a green aquarium-like light. Split in two by a scratched-up glass pane, it multiplies reflections, and opens imaginary spaces. The sound space features constant displacements between what we see but can’t hear (through the glass), hear but can’t see (off-screen), between multiple audio events—live music, talk, and playback. Music is also present visually, in the musician’s movements, instruments, and as sound waves running across computer screens. This rich environment begged to be explored with the camera and microphone, and from it grew this film. In editing, I complemented the self-conscious camerawork with a no less self-conscious editing style. Once the film was done did I realize that its citational use of linguistic and visual material also strongly connects to my earlier photo project, “Face Value” (www.uiowa.edu/~oberproj/facevalue). This is a deeper connection that I find intriguing and hope to explore further.
Beyond all commentary, however, I hope that “Take Off One Ear” simply makes for engaging, thought-provoking, and pleasurable viewing.
Sabine I. Gölz, July 30, 2010