As a former information architect, as a successful entrepreneur pioneering a new DIY approach to music business and as an advocate for decent artist compensation in the digital age, Canadian cellist and electronic artist Zoë Keating is often invited to talk or to perform at various tech conferences or web events around the world. Over the past few years, she has featured at Wired events, MacWorld conferences, TED talks or Virgin Disruptors debates. On 25th January 2014 last, she took part in the closing session of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where she performed live “Leap”, a brand new song accompanied by stunning visuals.
When publishing a first draft of “Leap” on Soundcloud in May 2013, Zoë Keating noted on her blog:
This one is vaguely about standing on the top of a mountain and being irresistibly drawn towards the edge. What if I leap? Will I fly? Will I fall? Will someone catch me?
The finished version takes us much higher than the top of a mountain with a breathtaking animation. Inspired by the recent film Gravity and based on satellite data and high resolution digital images of planet earth supplied by NASA, the accompanying video animated by computer artist Robert Hodgin is much more than a visual illustration of the composition.
The accelerating sequence of stills and alternating perspectives of the earth surface in perfect harmony with the movement of the music and the drone of the cello merge beautifully to create a breathtaking choreography, a spectacular cosmic ballet. A contemporary Musica Universalis.