For thousands of years humans have recognized the remarkable power and ability of sound, voice, and music to bring joy into our lives, to give meaning to life's rituals and passages, and to connect us with a divine presence greater than ourselves. The ancient art of chanting has long been embraced by the world's great religious traditions as a path to healing and enlightenment.
A chant is not an obscure musical ritual. It is an important tool used by people everywhere to heal their bodies, quiet their minds, and bring the sacred into their lives. A chant is the music of cosmic spheres as well as a natural expression of our consciousness.
Chants serve many purposes: they tell stories, as in the tale of Lord Rama from the great Indian epic the Ramayana; they cast out diseases, as in the healing chants of Siberian shamans; they befriend the snake spirits of Australian aborigines; they accompany the honey gathering ritual of Central African pygmies; or are voiced as Gregorian plainsongs of the Christian worship service.
Chants unify. They bring people together in thought, intention, knowledge, and love.
In churches, temples, mosques, ashrams, and kivas, people join voices in communal worship. From a simple grace before a meal to celebrations of birth and rituals accompanying death, people join together to intone their prayers. Religions and armies, tribes and nations have all recognized and made use of the power of chant to touch collective minds and hearts - for better and for worse.
This program was commissioned by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) as part of the program "Discoveries".
Music: Stephen Hatfield, Sarah Hopkins, Donald Patriquin, Ron Jeffers, Jukka Linkola, Alojz Srebotnjak, Marko Tajčević, Marjan Šijanec, Aleksander Kastalski, Hildegarda from Bingen, traditional chants from Australia, Croatia, Uzbekistan, Peru, Cameroon and Ghana, traditional chant of Apache, Slovenian folk song
Performed by: Vocal Theatre Carmina Slovenica
Concept: Karmina Šilec
Light: Danilo Pečar
Movement: Karmina Šilec
Costume: Gordana Gašperin
Premiere: 2003, Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana