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Helicopter String Quartet
Michigan Theater
Ann Arbor, MI
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Advance tickets are no longer available for this screening but can be purchased at the Michigan Theater box office starting 30 minutes prior to showtime.


Helicopter String Quartet
A film by Frank Scheffer, with music by Karlheinz Stockhausen, performed by the Arditti String Quartet
The Netherlands, 1995
35mm, academy, optical sound, color, 81 minutes
Dutch, English and German spoken, English subtitles

In one of the most certifiably eccentric musical events of the late 20th century, German composer Karlheinz Stockhausen designed and executed the concept of having four members of a string quartet playing an original piece by Stockhausen in four separate helicopters, all flying through the air simultaneously. The sound was then routed to a central location and mixed together; the work premiered, in turn, at the 1995 Holland Festival. Frank Scheffer's film Helicopter String Quartet depicts the behind-the-scenes preparations for this event; Scheffer also conducts and films an extended conversation with Stockhausen in which the creator discusses the conception and execution of his composition and then breaks it down analytically.

This screening is part of the UMS Renegades series, co-presented with the Ann Arbor Film Festival, in partnership with the Michigan Theater and University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA).


Michigan Theater (View)
603 East Liberty Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
United States



Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!


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