The wild has inspired innumerable pieces of music. One of them is the Song of a Giant Tortoise. It is a musical meditation on the subtly balanced ebbs and flows of the wild. Measured by the breath of the shakuhachi player, melodic phrases slowly unfold creating a sense of curious and innocent beauty as well as distance in space and time.
Earlier this year I had the opportunity to score yet another documentary by film maker Theo Lipfert entitled Invasion of the Giant Tortoises. The Song of a Giant Tortoise stems from that score. The film portraits a fascinating nature conservation project in Mauritius where giant tortoise – once plentiful but eventually extinct through over hunting during the 18th century – is now substituted by a similar species, the Aldabra giant tortoise. As an effect of the re-introduction of giant tortoise the whole ecological system has begun to gradually return to the balance which presumably existed before humans invaded the islands.
(Stefan Hakenberg, 2012)