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Julia Plaut

Julia Plaut - And Suddenly I Disappear

Fe’m harweiniwyd gan y testun hwn i ystyried cerddorion a chyfansoddwyr benywaidd y mygwyd eu lleisiau creadigol yn sylweddol neu y rhoddwyd taw arnynt hyd yn oed gan normau cymdeithas wrth briodi. Mynegodd Alma Mahler, gwraig Gustav, ei phrofiad fel hyn: ‘Mae’n teimlo fel pe bai rhywun wedi gafael yn dynn yn fy mraich a’m tywys oddi wrthyf fi fy hun.’


Er mwyn chwyddo llais creadigol Alma, dw i wedi saernïo’r palet harmonig ar gyfer y gwaith hwn o dri chord agoriadol cân Alma Mahler, Die Stille Stadt. Pwrpas yr ysgrifennu offerynnol yw dyrchafu a fframio eithafion emosiynol y llais, o ddryswch i gynddaredd ac yn olaf, drallod.

 

This text led me to consider women musicians and composers whose creative voices were heavily stifled or even silenced by societal norms upon becoming married. Alma Mahler, wife of Gustav, expressed her experience in this way: ‘I have been firmly taken by the arm and led away from myself.’


To magnify Alma’s creative voice, I have crafted the harmonic palate for this work out of the three opening chords of Alma Mahler’s song Die Stille Stadt. The instrumental writing serves to heighten and frame the emotional extremes of the voice, from bewilderment to rage and finally, desolation.

Richard McReynolds

Richard McReynolds - oozing transcendence from every pore

Mi ddewisais osod dau o destunau Kaite O’Reilly. Dw i’n hoffi neges dyheadol Be a river a’r ffocws ar gryfder personol a hyblygrwydd yn wyneb heriau bywyd, ond mi oedais rhag ei osod ar ei ben ei hun. Yna, wrth ddarllen This Body… lle mae Kaite yn disgrifio cyfansoddiad y corff dynol mewn ffordd gignoeth, y ces i’r syniad ar gyfer y darn. Penderfynais mai peth diddorol fyddai gosod y ddau destun gyda’i gilydd.

Creaduriaid dihafal o wych ydyn ni fel bodau dynol a chanddon ni ymwybyddiaeth ddiderfyn. Yn lletya’r meddwl hwn mae sachaid o gig sydd o hyd yn perfformio pob math o swyddogaethau corfforol y mae moesgarwch, gan amlaf, yn mynnu eu hanwybyddu. Nod oozing transcendence from every pore yw creu gofod lle gwahoddir y gynulleidfa i fyfyrio ar y ddeuoliaeth yma.

 

I chose to set two of Kaite O’Reilly’s texts. I like the aspirational message of Be a river and the focus on personal strength and malleability in opposition to life’s challenges, but I hesitated in setting it alone. It was then when reading This Body…, in which Kaite describes the makeup of the human body in a visceral manner, that the idea for the piece appeared to me. I decided that setting the two texts together would be an interesting space to inhabit.

We as humans are fabulous creatures with an infinite consciousness. Housing this mind is a sack of meat that is constantly performing all sorts of bodily functions that are on the most part politely ignored. oozing transcendence from every pore aims to create a space where the audience is invited to meditate on this duality.

Gareth Churchill

Gareth Churchill - Beg

A finnau wedi treulio cryn dipyn o amser mewn gofal meddygol, mi ges i fy nenu’n syth, ar lefel bersonol, at Beg gan Kaite O’Reilly o’i In Water I’m Weightless. I rai, gallai fod yn destun cignoeth ond i mi, roedd wir yn taro deuddeg.


Mae’r gwaith yma, fel gyda’m prosiect diweddaraf ac (fel mae’n digwydd) yr un nesaf yn rhyw fath o Singspiel (drama-gân). Mae’r isddiwylliant yma yn opera Almaenig y 18fed ganrif wedi fy nghyfareddu’n ddiweddar. Fe’i nodweddir gan destun llafar yn gymysg ag episodau cerddorol (weithiau’n werinol eu naws).


Bu’r ensemble offerynnol hefyd yn fy atgoffa fi o gerddoriaeth werin: mae’r delyn yn rhan annatod o’r traddodiad Cymreig ac yma mae’r ffliwt a’r feiolín yn etifeddu priodweddau’r pibgorn a’r crwth (i mi).


Mae’r ensemble yn cyflwyno cyfres o weadau sy’n amrywio o’r ‘cyfforddus’ i’r ‘chwibanu’ (drwy’r ‘gwyllt’) gan osod yr olygfa ar gyfer y geiriau dan gyfarwyddyd.

Having spent a good deal of time in medical care myself, I was instantly drawn, on a personal level, to Kaite O’Reilly’s Beg from her In Water I’m Weightless. For some it might be a gritty text, but it spoke to me strongly.


This work, as with my latest project and (as luck would have it) my next one, is a sort of Singspiel (‘singing-play’). This sub-culture of 18th-century German opera has fascinated me recently. It is characterised by spoken text intermixed with musical (sometimes folk-like) episodes.


The instrumental ensemble also put me in the mind of folk music: the harp is synonymous with Welsh tradition and the flute and viola here inherit characteristics of the pibgorn and crwth (for me).


The ensemble presents a series of textures ranging from the ‘comfortable’ to the ‘whistling’ (via the ‘wild’) which set the scene for the directed speech.

Timothy Johnston

Timothy Johnston - Gone

Cymerir y testun ar gyfer y darn hwn o Persians gan Kaite O’Reilly sy’n ail-ddehongli stori’r trasiedi Roegaidd gan Aeschylus ac fe’i tynnir o alarnad Xerxes am golledion milwrol trychinebus Persia. Doeddwn i ddim am greu gosodiad dramatig uniongyrchol o’r stori, ond edrych arni o ongl ehangach, fel metaffor am yr emosiynau mewn trychineb bersonol neu genedlaethol. Cyflwynir y testun drwy gymysgedd o berfformiadau ar gân ac ar lafar; defnyddir y canu ar adegau o hunanfyfyrio ac emosiwn wedi’i fewnoli. Torrir ar draws y rhain gan hyrddiau llafar lle y cyfeirir at ddigwyddiadau’r drychineb, fel pe bai natur argyfyngus y testun yn sgubo o’r neilltu unrhyw le i fyfyrio am yr alar a adlewyrchir yn y darnau canu.


Nid yw’r gerddoriaeth byth yn ceisio dod â phwnc y testun ei hun i’r fei, ond yn hytrach adlewyrchiad ydyw
o’r hyn sydd wedi bod. Yn neupen y darn ceir motiff sydd i’w glywed drosodd a thro ar y delyn, yn dyner ar
yr wyneb ond sy’n cynnwys rhyw bryder sy’n nadu o hyd yn yr ailadrodd a’r diffyg lliniaru boddhaol ac sydd
bob amser am syrthio’n ôl i’w nodau agoriadol ei hun. Torrir y deunydd yma gan hyrddiau cromatig uchel, fel atgof poenus sy’n gwthio’i ffordd yn ôl i’r meddwl. Yn gweu rhwng y ddau fotiff yma ceir dyfyniadau cerddorol o gân werin, The Three Ravens; mae’r faled yma’n sôn am gigfrain yn edrych dros faes y gad sy’n araf lenwi â galarwyr, yn sôn wrth ei gilydd sut na fydd unrhyw faint o alar yn newid beth sydd wedi digwydd ac nad yw ond yn dinistrio’r rheini sydd ar ôl. Mae’i alaw ddiniwed, heb empathi, yn cyfleu brwydr y canwr i ddygymod â thrychineb, gan osod y ddwy stori ochr yn ochr a chreu rhyw deimlad llonydd anesmwyth sydd, fel treigl amser, yn drifftio ymlaen yn ddi-hid ynghylch y drychineb sydd bellach yn encilio i’r gorffennol.


The text for this piece is taken from Persians, by Kaite O’Reilly, a retelling of the Aeschylus’ Greek tragedy,
and is drawn from Xerxes’ lament over catastrophic Persian military losses. I did not wish to create a direct
dramatic setting of the story, but approach it in a wider sense, as a metaphor for the emotions in a personal or national disaster. The text is delivered through a mixture of sung and spoken performance; singing is used in moments of self-reflection and internalised emotion. These are interrupted by spoken outbursts when reference is made to the events of the disaster, as if the urgency of the text sweeps aside any room for the turning over of grief reflected in the sung passages.


The music never tries to evoke the subject of the text itself, but rather is a reflection of what has been. The piece is bookended by a recurring harp motif, superficially gentle but with a nagging anxiety in its repetition and lack of satisfactory resolution, always wanting to fall back into its own opening notes. This material is broken up by loud chromatic outbursts, like a painful memory forcing its way back into the mind. Interwoven between both of these motifs are musical quotations from a folk song, ‘The Three Ravens’; this ballad tells of ravens overlooking a battlefield slowly filling with mourners, commenting to each other how no amount of grief will change what has happened and only destroys those left behind. Its innocuous melody an empathetically narrates the singer’s struggle to come to terms with disaster, paralleling the two stories and creating a sense of uneasy calm which, like the passage of time, drifts on indifferent to the tragedy now receding into the past.

Ethnie Foulkes

Ethnie Foulkes - They're All So Fucking Happy

Mae They’re All So Fucking Happy yn cynnwys llais allanwr sydd wedi’i ddadrithio ac sy’n gwibio rhwng sylwebaeth allanol a mewnol ar y byd y mae’n ei weld; y mwgwd sy’n cuddio gwir emosiwn, sy’n peri iddo ryw deimlad paranoiaidd o ffugioldeb, y mwgwd torfol na fedr uniaethu ag o. Ceir teimlad cryf bod y cymeriad ar ei ben ei hun ac wedi’i ynysu o weddill cymdeithas, ond hefyd mynegiant o’r tyndra rhwng ‘dinas galed’ a natur emosiynol cymdeithas. Cynrychiolir y teimladau hyn yn yr harmonïau ansoniarus a’r
cyfalawon drylliedig, gan ddefnyddio symudiad hanner tonaidd yn rheolaidd i ddangos bod y mwgwd yn llithro a hefyd traed dynoliaeth o dan bwysau’r gymdeithas fodern. Mae’r llais benywaidd yn cynrychioli adegau o bryder eithafol, yn aml wedi’u cyfosod ag adrannau bregus sy’n cynnwys gweadau moel a lleisiau myfyriol neu grynedig. Mae hyrddiau dwys eu gwead a harmonïau clwstwr lleisiol ochr yn ochr â pizzicati Bartók nerthol a gwaith lleisiol tesitwra uchel yn mynegi’r eiliad pryd mae anghysur a dicter y
cymeriad gwrywaidd yn torri’n rhydd, dim ond i syrthio unwaith eto i fyd ansicr, digalon ac ynysig.

They’re All So Fucking Happy features the voice of a disillusioned outsider who flits betweenan external and internal commentary of the world he sees; the mask which covers true emotion, causes him a paranoid sense of falseness, the collective mask with which he cannot associate. There is a poignant sense of the character being alone and isolated from the rest of society, but also an expression of the tensions between a ‘hard city’ and the emotional nature of a society. These sentiments are represented in the dissonant harmonies and fragmented counter-melodies, regularly using semitonal movement to illustrate the slipping of the mask, and of the feet of humanity under the pressures of modern society. The female voice represents moments of extreme anxiety, often juxtaposed with vulnerable sections featuring sparse textures and reflective or trembling vocals. Outbursts of dense texture and close-voiced cluster harmonies alongside violent Bartók pizzicati and high tessitura vocal work express the moment where the male character’s discomfort and anger break free, only to once again fall into an uncertain, depressive, isolated world.

Luciano Williamson
TC, PRSF, RVW, Hinrichsen, ACW & WG logo

Luciano Williamson - If

Mae rhai pobl yn uchel iawn eu cloch. Mae rhai pobl yn dawel iawn. Gall pobl uchel iawn eu cloch wneud i bobl dawel iawn deimlo nad oes neb eu heisiau.


Mae rhai pobl yn hyderus iawn. Mae rhai pobl yn swil iawn. Gall pobl hyderus iawn wneud i bobl swil iawn deimlo’n annigonol.


Mae If yn troi hyn ar ei ben.

Rhoddir pŵer anferth i synau tawel, bron na allwch eu clywed.

 


Some people are very loud. Some people are very quiet. Very loud people can make very quiet people feel unwanted.


Some people are very confident. Some people are very shy. Very confident people can make very shy people feel inadequate.


If turns this on its head.


Extremely quiet, almost inaudible sounds are given great power.

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