ŻfinMalta Utopia Emanuel Gat featuring music by Chick-p

Heartbreak, Synths, and Sounds of Home: Chick-P for Utopia

“The world premiere of Emanuel Gat’s Utopia closes ŻfinMalta’s 2022/23 season with a bang, literally – listen for Gat’s recordings of Malta’s recent fireworks festival in the music score, which Gat creates himself, along with the choreography and light design.” Sunday Circle, 21st May

In his time here creating, Gat has managed to capture the essence of Malta itself, in a soundscape filled with familiar sounds from our Mediterranean island. As well as Emanuel’s own contributions and compositions, Utopia’s musical score features music by Chick-P. We caught up with Michael ‘Chick-P’ Gat to find out the creative origins of the hauntingly beautiful signature melody that defines this work, and what it’s like to work with his father, Emanuel Gat.

If I had to choose a word to describe the feeling the piece conveys, I’d say heartbreak. But that’s a personal answer.
About Chick-P
I was born in Israel, and moved to the south of France when I was 5 years old. I was homeschooled, and started studying music as a drummer at a young age. Coming into my adolescence I began experimenting with electronic music, producing, recording, mixing etc… These days I’m finishing my studies in the Conservatoire Darius Milhaud in Aix-en-Provence, all the while working on my personal project as a rapper/producer, which consists of hiphop music inspired by artists like Madlib, MF DOOM, Mac Miller, Kendrick Lamar and others.
Chick-p for Emanuel Gat's utopia ŻfinMalta
The piece my father used in Utopia is actually the last track off of my instrumental LP “Wonderfood” that I had produced during lockdown, and released in October 2020. When searching for music to work with during the making of this show, my father contacted me and asked me to send him some tracks, and he ended up using just that one.
Chick-P wonderfood Utopia
"Wonderfood" 2020
I don’t often compose for dance, but I’ve had multiple experiences doing so in the past, both for my father and others.
Working with family is very comfortable. And knowing the person you’re working with that well, having seen their work all your life etc, makes understanding each other and what the piece needs a lot easier.

The score for Utopia is a very emotional piece, starting with a quiet melody played on the piano, which is later accompanied by an ensemble of varied synth sounds. If I had to choose a word to describe the feeling the piece conveys, I’d say heartbreak. But that’s a personal answer. And I think, depending on the context, each person is going to feel something different, and interpret the music in a different way.

Chick-P and Emanuel Gat music for ŻfinMalta's Utopia
Photograph by Camille Fenech
Utopia will be performed at Teatru Manoel for one final night! Don’t miss your chance to experience this beautifully and intricately composed work by award-winning Emanuel Gat.
26/27/28 May
Teatru Manoel

Watch James Vernon’s trailer for ‘Utopia,’  featuring music by Chick-P