Elina Akselrud

Tranience: Painting after Scriabin and Vine
Artistic Discipline: Multidisciplinary
Category: Brooklyn Arts Fund
Grant Year: 2020
Location: Mapleton

Elina Akselrud is a classical pianist and photographer. The focus of her work is combining her live piano music with various art genres into one unified presentation. A wise combination can create a truly multifaceted, fulfilling result and bring the final performance to reality in its most historically accurate, vivid, and brightest light. The essential knowledge and the inspiration that can be comprehended from an interdisciplinary performance. In experiencing her work, an audience feels something much more powerful than a concert. A multifaceted professional performance by precisely-executed style leaves unbelievable impact.

Her crossover project “Transience” binds piano performance (24 Preludes, op.11 by Alexander Scriabin, Sonata No.3 by Carl Vine) with the simultaneous live creation of a painting on stage (projected onto the background for the audience to see the entire process) while the music is being performed.

Most human beings have virtually 'seen' something upon hearing musical sounds of any type, style, genre, and instrumentation; often, the senses are more interconnected than they seem to be. They tend to respond with several of them, when only one is affected. Some people have an ability to see colors connected to musical sounds (synesthesia): in this case, they are either naturally synesthetic, (the relation happens on its own) or exactly the opposite, meaning they use a thoroughly-developed complex system of relativity between musical tones and color shades.

Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915) was in the latter group: although many do believe that he was naturally synesthetic. There are studies that clearly display a detailed scientific approach to the concept. He developed as an interdisciplinary composer throughout his entire life. In “Prometheus, the Poem of Fire,” he even notated a part for lights of various colors in the orchestral score, as well as has planned doing so for the unfinished “Mysterium.” However, he was not as specific regarding his early works. This proved challenging for the Intertwining Arts team as they created this project. The Preludes would lead the first half of the project through a journey of diverse impressions, emotions, and feelings: often sudden and transience. Through these, the visual performance would be developed to its fullest capacity and bloom during the Third Piano Sonata of Carl Vine, a contemporary Australian composer (b.1964). The Sonata is a piece of a different scope: nearly a thoroughly-composed, large, and deep work.

Many musical and visual works are presented as finished products, relying largely on the audience's imagination. Therefore, it is essential for the Intertwining Arts team to bring in the very element of live creation to stage theatrically.

Studying the link between sound and color has no end. The influence of the mix on human psychological state informs Akselrud’s desire to share this project with Intertwining Arts audience.