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Du Yun’s The Ocean Within

Watch & Listen

Born in Shanghai and now living in New York, Pulitzer prize-winning composer/multi-instrumentalist/vocalist/performance artist Du Yun is hard to categorize, combining as she does a dazzling array of influences from classical music to trip hop. She loves visuals, which come into play in her atmospheric work for solo harp, The Ocean Within. At one point, the LA Phil’s new harpist, Emmanuel Ceysson, watches his own hands as they spiral gracefully through the air. To achieve the right theatrical mood to match her poetic program note, Du Yun also uses silences and numerous sound effects, such as tapping the body of the harp or scraping its strings with screwdrivers. You can see Ceysson’s feet in action on the pedals with the insert that occasionally appears in the upper left quadrant of your screen. As Ceysson says before performing this piece, “I wish you a good discovery.”