Conditioned reactions are a universal part of the way humans engage with the world. From upbringing to culture, from karma to energetic patterning, we consciously and unconsciously nurture illusions of control. Deep-seated biases also affect our listening habits, and that is why, at O/Modernt, we strive ceaselessly to awaken new kinds of un/conditioned listening that can unsettle our accustomed responses. This year’s weeklong musical feast is devoted to a composer who made it his mission to rouse his listeners from their culturally circumscribed slumbers. Joseph Haydn (1732–1809) revels in setting up expectations that are built on the generic styles that were current in his day, but only in order to thwart them – often with some very radical artistic manoeuvres! Haydn thereby enacts and promotes un/conditioned listening within the actual musical language of the eighteenth century. Taking a cue from the Austrian maestro, O/Modernt is delighted to present a programme of concerts that aim to break free from auditory shackles and celebrate the creative power of the un/conditioned ear.
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