Iceland is full of a number of things.

It was Sunday morning; there was no Catholic church in Seðisfjörður, and the Lutheran Church seemed not be have services, so I read Byzantine morning prayer and regretted that I would not be able to join in public worship.

On this morning (a rare sunny day) my group went for a hike through the town of Seyðisfjörður, which has become somewhat of an artists’ colony. We hiked out of the town on a path which our guide said would lead to an art installation by a waterfall.

I was at the front, and I came upon this.

As I approached, I heard chanting. I looked in, and four people were walking around the dome, singing. Our group entered, and one couple was Jewish. The singers switched (by coincidence?) to a Hebrew song, Shalom Chaverim. Welcome friends.

We chatted with the singers, who explained that they were Swiss tourists who and arrived on the ferry. On Thursday they by accident discovered there was a music event at these domes, and decided to attend. Then they decided to hike up Sunday morning to sing.

Here and here and here are videos of what the domes look like and sound like from inside.

Konrad Korabiewski explains:

Welcome on Wednesday September 5, at 17.00 o’clock, [2012] when ‘Tvísöngur’ will be opened for the public on a mountainside above the town of Seyðisfjörður, East Iceland. Tvísöngur is a sound sculpture by the German artist Lukas Kühne. It is a homage to the Icelandic musical tradition and works as a natural amplifier for a five-tone harmony.

At the opening in Seyðisfjörður there will be performances by local musicians, both professionals and amateurs, and guests are encouraged to bring their own version of five-tone singing. Walking up to the location of the sculpture takes approx 10-15 minutes, but there will be transport available for those who need it.

‘Tvísöngur’ is an Icelandic musical cultural heritage, for several voices, this is an artistic expression, which may soon be lost. It is one of the first and still surviving live forms of improvised polyphony chants in Europe. The importance of this cultural treasure is not to underestimated. The plan is to set the Icelandic ‘Tvísöngur’ into a sculpture of ‘singing concrete’.

This sculpture consisting of 5 connected rooms are designed on the basic λ numbers of the harmony of the Tvisöngur. The heights of the rooms are between 2.06m and 3.89m, the longest stretch being 7.80m. This sensual, interactiv and didactic sculpture invites the visitor on the journey through the 5 Doms based on the musical concept of Tvisöngur, allowing them to enter, touch and play the artwork in order to better understand space in relation to the frequencies contained within its volumes.

The Swiss singers explained this to us, and then placed themselves around the dome, and sang Laudate Dominum omnes gentes.

God had provided worship for us on Sunday morning, and Iceland was full of little surprises like that.

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