SUAL Archives | 2011

Mazen Hussein: Mémoire, Hommage, Départ — sound projection

#1                  Mémoire
Duration:      6‘27“
#2                  Hommage
Duration:      8‘33“
#3                  Départ
Duration:      7‘49“
Type:              Source recordings provided by the artist


Voices and fragrances coming up while remembering. Perhaps it is nostalgia of the childhood, which was evoked by these voices…

… the whispering of my mother’s prayer … the radio of my father … the noises of our small street in Aleppo …

This piece uses acoustic voices exclusively, which were recorded on location, or in the studio.


This work deals with aspects of inner fear and the consequent search for inner peace.


Starting point of this composition is an Arabic text which I wrote in 2004, and had translated in four languages (German, French, Norwegian, Japanese). The sound and rhythmic qualities of these languages made me drift while composing. The polyphony is accompanied by the remembered noises of my childhood. This work is a first approach towards the sound of language.

Mazen Hussein

Mazen Hussein was born in Aleppo in 1972. He studied viola, Arab zither and music theory at the Music Academy in Damaskus. Between 1996 and 2003 he was a member of the national symphony orchestra of Damaskus. Arab music and culture influenced his development as a composer to great effect. Another impact came from his interest in electroacoustic music, which he studied at the Conservatoire National de Musique de Toulouse between 2003 and 2006. His composition ‘Hommage’ was awarded at the composition contest of Bourges in 2006. He has given numerous concerts in France and the Near East. Since 2006, Mazen Hussein lives as a freelance composer in Berlin – composing, teaching, leading the ‘Arrumi Ensemble’, and working for various theatre projects.

[info as of 12/2011]