The Battleship Potemkin
The highlight for me, what summed up not only Matan Porat's artistic process but also "The Battleship Potemkin", was a single moment. A fraction of a second. A fleeting thought.
His arm arched gracefully from left to right and then stopped in mid air. Stopped. Mere inches above deep, soulful, low-looming piano keys. And just as quickly as the moment came, it was gone. His left hand slipped gracefully back to meet the right at the twinkling, shattering keys. That one instant of time represented the active thought and care that went into improvising a piano score to a silent film. It is really quite something to be able to see a person thinking.That is what set this performance apart. Of course, I know that the musicians were thinking about what they were playing in every other performance this week, but to know that this musical thought was completely original, and not based on a written music score, was special.
The end product, and the process itself, teetered on the brink of insanity, occasionally craning to peer over the edge. And much as I was held by the image of a baby carriage hurtling down the steps, so too was I held captive by a musical entity on the brink of chaos. It seemed that at any moment, the entire process could self-destruct and send us careening. I was on the edge of my seat. Held frozen by the unsettling film images, but also by the feeling that it could all come crashing down at any moment.