Silent Death

A quiet death can mean a merciful death: I want to die after a good and fulfilling life, peacefully. In reality, death often occurs too hard, too painfully, too loud, too early or too later. A quiet death can also be understood as dying secretly, without nobody noticing. Or in undistinguished way. Or it can mean that we don’t want to talk about death, because it’s not a nice subject.

Silent Death is a sound performance I make with sound artist Heidi Soidinsalo. We ask, if you can hear the death, and how does it sound, what kind of sounds a dying creature hears, and in what kind of soundscape the death occurs? We build a listening space, where we imagine the death, and play it to the audience. People, and other animals, plants, languages, villages and factories make noise when they live – when they die, the sound stops.

Our common history: the first Juha’s performance that Heidi saw was Silence (2007), and the first Heidi’s performance that Juha saw was Heidi Klein (2012), which was a collaboration with Anni Klein. During the performance, Heidi changed her lastname from Lind to Soidinsalo. Our first collaboration was Private Dancer (2017) by W A U H A U S. We also teach at the sound design department in Uniarts, Helsinki.

Photo: Heidi Soidinsalo