A multimedia tribute to Vilma Grunwald, based on her farewell letter written moments before her death in Auschwitz

A SHRINE FOR THE SOUL is part of the ongoing series, ‘Meetings with Remarkable Women’ by composer Marion von Tilzer. It is an ode to life amidst a world of chaos. The music has a circular structure, symbolizing the infinite cycle of life. It is based on the interweaving and parallel existence of the worldly and the spiritual, the individual and the collective experience. For this project she is collaborating with curator & scenic designer Maarten Spruyt. Yani is responsible for the interactive sound system

This collaborative project combines music, artwork, soundscapes and fragments of film. Live performances of von Tilzer’s composition (for mezzo-soprano, solo cello, string quartet and piano) are contiguous with an interactive installation of sound and interpretive artwork.

Vilma’s surviving son, Frank Grunwald (b1932) created a sculpture in honor of his mother, which is the centerpiece of the installation. All artwork is connected to musical fragments through sensory headphones, enabling the visitor to individually infuence his/ her audio track.

Vilma’s letter will be sung in the original Czech. The English translation: “You, my only one, dearest, in isolation we are waiting for darkness. We considered the possibility of hiding but decided not to do it since we felt it would be hopeless. The famous trucks are already here, and we are waiting for it to begin. I am completely calm. You-my only and dearest one, do not blame yourself for what happened, it was our destiny. We did what we could. Stay healthy and remember my words that time will heal – if not completely then at least partially. Take care of the little golden boy and don’t spoil him too much with your love. Both of you-stay healthy, my dear ones. I will be thinking of you and Misa. Have a fabulous life, we must board the trucks. Into eternity, Vilma.”

Video afspelen

This project is a tribute to Remembrance Day (May 4th), uniting people across faith, cultures and backgrounds; a day to commemorate the past and to remind us to guard the dignity of life in the present and future.

CONCEPT: Maarten Spruyt + Marion von Tilzer
PRODUCER: Desiree Achterkamp, MuziCan Foundation
COMPOSER: Marion von Tilzer
SOUND CONCEPT: Yani, LSS Location Sensitive Sound
MUSICIANS: Bella Adamova, Maya Fridman, stijkkwartet tba, Marion von Tilzer
ARTISTS: Frank Grunwald, Ossip, Juul Kraijer along with other artists, tba


April/May 2023; Location: Amsterdam, tba
Desiree Achterkamp, tel: +316 57 57 45 80, info@waardeschatten.nl
MuziCan Foundation: Konstantin Koukias konstantinkoukias@gmail.com, www.muzican.nl