TRACES is a collaborative project by Jagna Anderson and Dodi Helschinger, revolving around the presence of the absent. In a series of installative vocal performance art events we are deconstructing songs by Franz Schubert – cultural commonplaces of melancholic yearning and longing –, questioning the role of singer and the setting of Lied delivery and challenging the role of the audience. The voice as a paradoxical third entity besides the two performers on stage is shimmering between an acoustic phantom and a fully embodied, material phenomena.

With special thanks to Ulrike Sowodniok for scientific monitoring and vocal coaching.

Du bist die Ruh

A performance for solo voice, metronome and moving body
with references to Franz Schubert, Du bist die Ruh, op. 59, no 3
premiere: 15 April 2016 | 20:00 | Mime Centrum Berlin



Concept: Dodi Helschinger
Performance: Dodi Helschinger (voice), Jagna Anderson (movement)
Dodi Helschinger:
i don’t know if i’m singing. maybe i’m escaping into silence. or i’m hiding behind the scream. maybe i’m only breathing, in and out, in and out: whatever i’m doing, something will be missing. in everything i’m doing, absence is perceptable: of all that i am not doing. of all that does not happen.

where is the song when it’s not sung? where is it now – in this moment of utter silence?

the body of the song is just a memory. the body of dance a volatile movement in time and space. the given beat with no-one listening is just the empty passing of time.

listen: tick… tick… tick… that never stops. not even when you stop.

Jagna Anderson:
it starts with the notion of absence. i hear the voice singing, sighing, sounding, but i cannot see the singer.
i stay silent. my larynx is empty. the emptiness is spreading: it eats the whole body out.
till there is only a resonating space. around this empty space a baggy skin starts dancing, flapping around the hollow skull, hollow bones, hollow alveoli of the lung. around the well contoured emptiness of the eye sockets or of the mouth.
there are more and more empty spaces in between the bones, in between the organs, in between the membranes.
i am falling down the rabbit holes of my body.


Nacht und Träume

A performance for a space & two voices
with references to Franz Schubert, Nacht und Träume, op. 43, no 2
premiere: 26 November 2016 at Mime Centrum Berlin
installation – a short video clip
by and with Jagna Anderson & Dodi Helschinger
This performance is a nocturnal expedition into the spaces in-between. We are exploring subtle oscillations and microtonal textures in-between our voices. With simple materials we are building an environment in which a fluid or fibrous or granular space and its constant transformations can become visible as well as audible. Can we question this pleasure of singing a song and listening to the song by tracking it back to the basic sound phenomena? Can we map the ever evading traces of sound in and in-between our bodies?


Nebensonnen – Sundogs

A performance for two voices, some illusions and
historical sound material: DCA TRACON September 11, 2001 KRANT Departure position
may contain references to Franz Schubert, Nebensonnen, Winterreise op. 89, no 23
special premiere guest: Michal Talma-Sutt playing piano

premiere: 15 April 2017


The images of things: these, like to films
Scaled off the utmost outside of the things,
Flit hither and thither through the atmosphere,
And the same terrify our intellects,
Coming upon us waking or in sleep,
When oft we peer at wonderful strange shapes
And images of people lorn of light

Of The Nature of Things by Titus Lucretius Carus
Book IV, translated by William Ellery Leonard (1916)
concept, voice, performance – Jagna Anderson & Dodi Helschinger
vocal coaching – Ulrike Sowodniok

The journey of TRACES is a quest for both – painfully present and painfully absent Mother.

Shortly before the end of his journey The Wanderer in Schubert’s Winterreise sees three suns in the sky … the suns he desires are the illusory ones, the parhelia, the refraction of sunlight by ice crystals in the atmosphere …

At the end of our journey we are surveying traces, which “Mother of all Events” (Baudrillard), the enormous simulacra-producing machine, has left in our body archive. Using historical sound material from September 11 attacks “Sundogs” plays with paradoxes of images and of voices in form of a minimalistic vocal performance and processual installation.


Rehearsal Du bist die Ruh #1

Installation Nacht und Träume