'Rothko and me in the time of quarantine'
commission of Stedelijk Museum Schiedam

The performance with Rothko’s painting had to be cancelled due to the lockdown.
However a fixed media piece was created inspired by this project.

‘Since the live performance couldn’t happen, I had to rethink the whole concept because the
essential part was to perform in the same room, with Rothko’s painting. To recreate that
atmosphere elsewhere is just simply impossible and I didn’t even want to attempt it. While I
composed the new piece in Worm Sound Studio I watched the artpiece on laptop’s screen. It
was at the same time a ridiculous thing to do, but also melancholic and hopeful in a way. It
made me feel that the painting is isolated and I felt the distance between us. So I started to
rely on these emotions. And that was the moment when it clicked that piece should be about
feeling longing, but not in a defeated way. More like feeling the pause and delay, what we
actually experience in our everyday life during the quarantine. Even though we are not
sharing space with the art it still exists out there, and there is a hope to connect after all.
I still made use of the melody line, which I’d created during my time with the painting in the
museum. Also there is another factor which was very important for this project; the legacy of
Morton Feldman, the American composer who had already composed pieces for Rothko’s art.
It is called Rothko Chapel, which is actually an existing non-denominational chapel in the
United States, with a permanent exhibition of Rothko’s art. Rothko Chapel 4 is one of my
favorite pieces from Morton Feldman. There was a short melody in the voice, which had a
calling gesture. That grabbed my attention. I knew I needed to incorporate that in my piece.
It’s just simply a high E D note.
As I was thinking about how best to express the calling in terms of instrumentation it struck
me that brass instruments had these functions in mediaeval times. So I asked my father, who
is a trumpeter, to play and record this short gesture for me. This act also had a double
meaning for me. In these uncertain times, when I am not sure when I can go back home, this
motive has a very powerful meaning. Also it made me a bit nostalgic, just like when I was a
kid and my dad was calling me, to clean up my mess or to have lunch back at home in
Next to the piece I used the zither and my voice a lot, to make textures and drone lines in the
background. I see this piece as a reflection on acknowledging uncertainty, of being aware of
delays, and isolation; but being hopeful and knowing that it’s a transformation through which
we can come out stronger together. ‘


created by: Mári Mákó

premiere: iii workspa ce, Den Haag, 2019
collaboration with visual artists Oddkin (Márton Kabai & Natela Lemondzhava) and
Fazle Shairmahomed (dancer)

Hold, an hour-long multidisciplinary performance initaited by Mári Mákó. The artists goal was to explore together the notion of everlasting development of oneself and to reflect on the challenge of holding one’s ground in times of crisis. Together they merge sound art, performance, visual storytelling, sensory dance and spatial (multichannel) electroacoustic music.

Interdiscliplinary performance collective

with Matthea de Muynck (violin), Julian Sarmiento (double bass), Anna Lachegyi (viola de gamba) and Christina Karagianni (dance).
premiere: Delft Fringe Festival 2019 and was repeated at the Alba Nova Festival (BE)

Coming from different backgrounds and expertise, such as sonology and early music, Sfessania search for ways to re-invent stories from the past and connect them to contemporary culture. Sfessania is their first project.
Is a performance that arose from the need to investigate the relation of performers and audiences with repertoirse and materials from the past. Inspired by the Bali de Sfessania, a series of paintings by Jacques Callot, this performance follows the threads of meaning these paintings convey. Using a commedia dell’arte structure and colliding early music with live electronics, dance and improvisation, Sfessania seeks to revive some of the magical powers that were attributed to music and dance in the 17th century.


intrumentation: light dependent oscillator with accelometer sensor
for quadrophonic sound system
duration: 15'00

The instrument, Schmitt meant to challenge and explore the relationships between motion, gesture and music in a multi-channel speaker setup.
The piece is also questioning a certain issue behind using self-made instruments or controllers compared to the use of traditional instruments. It is strongly connected to a reference point (expectation) of how the players gestures on the instrument are coordinated with the sounding outcome.

for Maze Ensemble

premiere: Maze Festival, Splendor, Amsterdam 2018
duration: 13'05

 In a world that becomes more and more like a game environment, MAZE FESTIVAL explores interactive scores as a way of questioning and redesigning the relationship between musicians, composers and audience, using game strategies and interactive electronics.

Synergatic Interpolations
collaboration with
Fazle Shairmahomed
premiered: Cloud Danslab, Den Haag, 2016

In this residency the artists explore together the relations between sound and movement as immersive of each other. The sound installation consists out of one sensor and two oscillators, which allow an immersive physicality to develop. Initially by using the hands to create shadows, manipulate light, and to change the position of the sensor, transforming the soundscape constantly. In performance, physicality is most often facilitated by sound, and therefore sensorially more prominent, which we aim to challenge by enhancing this relation through technological devices and light. This research questions the input-output relation of sound and movement, and different technological devices. How can the relation between sound and movement become diffuse and immersive of each other?