Autumn 2019

DROP – DROP – DROP!


First the dressing gown, then the eyes, then the mouths. Not your usual Monday night then! A first sharing of Stark Bollock Naked created by Larisa Faber raised a few eyebrows at Camden’s People’s Theatre the other week. Secretly (and not so secretly) I was grateful for the thin layer of Merino on my skin as I sat on stage performing extended techniques on the amplified speculum. Next to me, bedecked with projections and undergirded by the sound of gynaecological paraphernalia, Larisa put the birthday suit firmly on the map. Brace yourselves for season 20/21 – it will be all wool and no shoddy!  

Before then, a few jolly occasions to wear your best fleece and flaunt your woollies:  Hebridians Mancunians on the Isle of Wight After bringing Anthill and Flyways to eyes and ears in Johannesburg and Cape Town this summer, indefatigable harpist Eira Lynn Jones performs the works with the Royal Northern College of Music Harp Ensemble at the Harp on Wight International Festival this weekend. Catch Anthill at the opening concert at Ryde Methodist Church tonight, 25th October, 7.15pm. Flyways will feature as part of Flying with the Birds and you can hear a short version of it this Sunday 27th October at 2pm. More info here.


Quel bain pour votre Rambouillet? I arranged Lou Koster’s orchestral overture to her 1927 operetta An der Schwemm (At the Bathsfor string quintet. Commissioned as part of the 100 years of the Luxembourg Swimming Club celebrations, this new version will be performed on 9th November by the Quintette Lecuit together with other Koster arrangements. At this séance académique, musicologist Danielle Roster will also enlighten us as to why swimming was such a feature in Koster’s compositional output as we think back on how swim styles and swimwear fashions have changed over the course of a century. 
100% Reine Schurwolle If you happen to be in Berlin on Friday 22nd November at 19.00, put on your Lodenmantel and swing by the Luxembourg Embassy where soprano Gerlinde Sämann and pianist Claude Weber will delight you with a program of Helen Buchholtz’s works from their much acclaimed recent CD release Und hab’ doch so grosse Sehnsucht. My piece Und um die Holzbank duftete der Flieder composed in response to Buchholtz’s work will also be performed. A screening of Anne Schiltz’s film Im Dialog mit Helen Buchholtz as well as an introduction to Buchholtz’s work by the specialist who saved the score-manuscripts from the bonfire. Everyone is welcome but please email the embassy ahead of the concert if you would like to attend: berlin.culture@mae.etat.lu. I look forward to catching up with my Berliner friends! 


Hand-woven Turkish Merino  After unlocking the potential of clapping opera penguins with Hand Clap at TAT festival this summer, I have incorporated these new-found tricks into a work for maverick piano duo Arzu & Gamze Kirtil premiering in Ankara at the Luxembourg House on 27th November.Küçük Ev (The Little House) is based on a clapping game the twin sisters used to play when they were young. I was keen to create a virtuosic exercise in piano and clapping techniques making the most of two sets of identical hands. Commissioned by the pianists and supported by SACEM Luxembourg, the work will have its Luxembourg premiere in spring and subsequently tour across Europe as part of this new 4-hands program. To attend the concert on 27th in Ankara, get in touch with management@arzugamzekirtil.com .   TheLincoln Luxembourg Longwool After premiering the work at HCMF18United Instruments of Lucilin will be performing Snakes & Ladders in its 4m20x4m20 oversize floormat version at the Casino Luxembourg on 5th December at 7pm as well as on Sunday 8th at 11am. More info here. The home-friendly tabletop version of the music-game is also still available from my store Noutefabrik.


A Carbon Negative London Yarn When we are not distracted by politicians pulling wool over our eyes, we have much to look forward to in buzzing London. Our Dinner With Daisy label and hub for experimental and exciting music and legendary club nights is celebrating its 10th Anniversary this year! Henri and I are planning some special releases for the new year but in the meantime, you can enjoy our back catalogue and find some fun stuff for under the tree at  https://dinnerwithdaisy.bigcartel.com/ and https://dinnerwithdaisyrecords.bandcamp.com/ Also, Henri has curated a brilliant series of free Friday lunch-time concerts at Bishopsgate Institute. Last week’s Rhodri Davies was a highlight and today’s Zashiki Warashi featuring Aki Fujimoto on taiko (of Neige and French for Cartridge fame) will be equally exciting. Another stand-out for me is the Laurence Crane/Mark Knoop concert on 15th November. I will be there!  The Corriedale Just a note to the harpists I know  – In your Father’s Care is available from Shorter House Edition. Published as part of the choral anthology Sleep Holy Babe, it is also available as an individual title (via tom@shorterhouse.com) and works as a short partner piece to Britten’s Ceremony of Carols as it is scored for 3 upper voices with harp (or piano) accompaniment.


Lambswool With their recycled ocean plastic trainers and organic superhero outfits, the kids of today grow up more eco-fashion aware. Sustainability is key to our survival on this planet and this young generation knows it. Yet, this sort of awareness doesn’t help when it comes to getting dressed in the morning! The appeal of softly-textured organic cottons and reimagined hand-me downs does nothing to facilitate squeezing Tiny E into his bamboo bloomers. Just how do you argue with a happy three-year-old shouting:  “but Mummy – I’m wearing all of Edgar!”  And so he does! A good tip for all of us perhaps: always make sure to be wearing your true self! Maybe happiness can be that simple! 
‘til next time, Catherine