The impressive effect derived solely from the humming chorus of the audience in the sold-out hall was remarkable.

Sebastian Krämer, Offenbach-Post


The audience as artist

›CONNECT – The Audience as Artist‹ dissolves hierarchies between audience and performers, focusing particularly on the audience. The pan-European initiative enabled by the Art Mentor Foundation Lucerne began in 2016 as a cooperation between four leading contemporary music ensembles – Ensemble Modern, London Sinfonietta, Asko|Schönberg and Remix Ensemble – and first took place that year. The goal of the project is to explore the relation between composer, musician and audience anew, enabling the audience to play a participatory role.

For its third edition in 2021, Catherine Milliken was commissioned to write a new work. The Australian-born composer and oboist, once a founding member of Ensemble Modern, has been composing musical theatre works, instrumental and chamber music, radio plays, installations, theatre and film music since 1990. With ›Night Shift - The Rehearsal‹ Cathy Milliken composes an evening in which the audience becomes the actor. "Participation is the first duty of the audience", when they create a poetic world together with the performers on this evening, dreaming and overcoming boundaries. The world premiere will take place with Ensemble Modern on September 1, 2021 at Berlin’s Philharmonie as part of the Musikfest Berlin; after that it will be performed by the partner ensembles in London, Amsterdam and Porto as well as in 2022 with Ensemble Modern at the festival ›cresc... – Biennale für aktuelle Musik Frankfurt Rhein Main‹.

CONNECT - The Audience as Artist 2018 (Trailer)
CONNECT - The audience as artist 2016 (Trailer)
CONNECT - The Audience as Artist, 2016
CONNECT - The Audience as Artist, 2016