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  • ‘Sanctus’, 2007, 6’

    “ The short 16mm-film « Sanctus » is enchantingly beautiful. A large black image appears in front of you, and the first voices of a choir drift from the speakers. Very slowly a choir appears from out of the ink black of the screen, accompanied by a handful of violinists. The image reminds us of the clair-obscur technique used in paintings by Rembrandt. Here, the filmmaker is painting with light. In a yellow haze you distinguish the conductor. Then, slowly, members of the choir are being lit up form the darkness, sometimes a single person, sometimes a group of singers. But it are only fragments you see ; you need the music to make the image complete. And because your mind automatically combines the music you hear with the image you see, you are led to think that the mouths of the choir members move to the sounds of the voices. In fact, the singers simply stare into the distance, motionless and entirely silent. This does not diminish the film’s the power of expression. Moreso, the drama of it all is being reinforced. The characters appear icily pale and lonely, and it is exactly by not singing they seem to become one with the music – excerpts from the prozaic and spiritual Berliner Messe by Arvo Pärt. [...] “

    (Ingrid Commandeur, Metropolis M magazine)



    s16mm, color

    Fiction, experimental

    A tableau vivant portraying a solemn and spiritual, but eerily silent choir.

    Written and directed by Viola Groenhart
    Conductor Felix van den Hombergh
    Choir De Amsterdamse Cantorij : Edwin Oudemans
    Simone Aarendonk Renate Meijer
    Rob Beck Niek Noppen
    Judith van der Bend Paul Peerenboom
    Adrienne van den Bogaard Geraldine Raap
    Pauline de Die Margriet Rienks
    Ank Eijkelkamp Jan Sleumer
    Inge Hemme Cartien Traas
    Marten Hoogenhout Tineke Verheus
    Agnes van Koert Wendelien Vos
    Adrien Kuijten Bas van Wingerden
    Jan Harm Oosterveen
    Strings Cees van den Akker
    Jim James
    Nadezda Khomutova
    Martin van Manen
    Ulrika Wielander
    Marieke Wijntjes
    Composition Excerpts from Berliner Messe (1990-1992)
    Composed by Arvo Pårt
    DOP/Camera operator Ben Geraerts
    Sound recordists Arjan Loogman
    Wouter den Bakker
    Runners Jasper de Bruin
    Bastiaan Mobach
    Ad van Bilsen
    Ank Daamen
    Elise van Iterson
    Editor Viola Groenhart

    Nominations & awards
    Nomination René Coelho Prize, Netherlands Institute for Media Art
    Nomination Film & Video Prize, Gerrit Rietveld Academy
    Nomination Fine Arts Prize, Gerrit Rietveld Academie
    Nomination Art Olive Young Talent Award