From Within ...

for large ensemble, computer-generated sound and light [2018]

From Within… is a work in three parts with a duration of sixty minutes. The parts are separated by sections without the ensemble playing, focusing on electronics and six tam tam gongs around the ensemble, exited by transducers. The composition also includes a visual element: A sculpture of LEDs above the ensemble, creating moving patterns of light in sync with the music. 'From Within ...' is a commission by Ensemble Intercontemporain and IRCAM, composed by Marko Nikodijevic and Robert Henke.

Archaic and repetitive movements. Large tectonic shifts in structure. Forces of contraction and expansion. Ephemeral, intimate moments suggesting a different and more static concept of time.

The title refers to the core process of creativity: Bringing hidden ideas to the surface. It also evokes the picture of volcanic eruptions, of a strong force that has yet to be unleashed.

Electronic sounds and acoustic instruments merge into an inseparable and monolithic unity. Technology allows to define a rich sonic universe, ranging from near infrasonic bass frequencies to crystalline microscopic glitches, executed dynamically and with precision, aligned with the acoustic abundance created by the instrumentalists.

The LED sculpture by Robert Henke is located above the ensemble, in front of a floating array of sixty loudspeakers responsible for the producion of a three-dimensional soundscape via wave field synthesis.

Light, color and visual movements are treated with the same amount of fine-grained detail and precision as the sonic part of the composition.

Visual Patterns

From Within...’s visual component is an integral part of the work. It serves as counterpoint and complete ‘voice’ within the composition. An irregular arrangement of LED stripes above the ensemble creates a visual scenario that pulsates and interacts with the music, ranging from subtle colorisation to bright and overwhelming intensity.

The visual sculpture deliberately avoids the association of video. Its focus is on color and shape. It consists of 96 lines of 85 RGB LED pixels each, in two spatially distributed layers. The individual pixels remain clearly visible, like water drops in the sunlight.

The LED sculpture has been designed and constructed by Robert Henke. Custom programming by Markus Heckmann and Selma Benramdane. Technical support and advice by Michael Sollinger and Steffen Wittig. Custom cables by Karin. Studio Robert Henke manufacturing crew: Sebastian Wolf and Gizem Oruc.


From Within..., is a collaboration of two artists usually operating in different musical fields, but sharing similar ideas.

Robert Henke was born 1969 in Munich an is living in Berlin.

Marko Nikodijevic was born in 1980 in Subotica, Serbia and studied composition in Belgrade with Zoran Erić and Srdjan Hofman between 1995 and 2003. In addition, he attended courses and lectures in nonlinear mathematics and physics.

Following his education in the Serbian capital, he undertook advanced training in composition with Marco Stroppa at the Academy of Music and the Performing Arts in Stuttgart in 2003.

His compositional production has won prizes and awards at the International Young Composers Meeting in Apeldoorn, the Gaudeamus Music Week in Amsterdam, the 3rd Brandenburg Biennale and the UNESCO Rostrum of Composers.

In 2013 Marko Nikodijevic received one of the three composition furtherance prizes of the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation and in 2014 was awarded the Deutscher Musikautorenpreis (German Composers‘ Prize) in the category Promotion of New Talent.

Wave Field Synthesis

Wave field synthesis allows to distribute sound in space with extreme detail. For 'From Within... ', the ‘Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/ Musique (IRCAM) in Paris provided the algorithm feeding the more than 60 loudspeakers.

d&b Audiotechnik, generously sponsored the loudspeakers, the amplification hardware and the technical staff necessary to operate it. Thank you!!!

This project is also a showcase of their latest audio processor technology, which is the central hub for all audio signals.

Matthias Pintscher conducting the ensemble during rehearsal