A Brief Descent into Deep Time
Date: Saturday 30th April 2022
Venue: Christchurch Cathedral
Tickets €24 (Concessions €12)
Chamber Choir Ireland
Paul Hillier, conductor
Steve Martland Sea Songs
John Frandsen weather4casts: 4 seasons in 4 movements
John Luther Adams A Brief Descent into Deep Time
In the second of their two-part retrospective on Steve Martland, Chamber Choir Ireland places the late composer in the context of his contemporaries, John Frandsen and John Luther Adams—both born within a few years of him.
Martland’s Sea Songs is a kind of sequel to his Street Songs - performed by Chamber Choir Ireland earlier this year - making use of the library of the English Folk Song and Dance Society in order to draw from traditional sea shanties.
"I wanted specifically to find texts that were not just the usual nautical heave-ho sort of thing, but instead explored the dangers and hardships still being experienced by sailors as recently as the early 19th century. I was also very happy to see in these texts the sense of camaraderie and mutual support that existed between the sailors." – Martland
In weather4casts: 4 seasons in 4 movements, John Frandsen upholds the long tradition of music inspired by the seasons of the year. The text is a compilation of weather forecasts from the Danish Institute of Meteorology (translated into English by Paul Hillier) as well as poems by the Danish author Simon Grotrian, and looks at the place of weather as ‘a main common life condition’ (Frandsen).
A new co-commission from John Luther Adams, A Brief Descent into Deep Time, explores the ‘space’ between the environment and human culture, and time as measured on a geological scale, passing ‘metaphorically through 1.7 billion years of descent through the layers of the Grand Canyon’ (Frandsen).
All three works explore our growing consciousness of the powerful elements that surround us—and how they are changing. Looking at our relationship with our environment, we realise that what once may have seemed far-removed is, in fact, something of which we are very much a part.
Garnering a strong reputation for its unique approach to creative commissioning, recording and programming, Chamber Choir Ireland is the country’s flagship choral ensemble and national chamber choir under the Artistic Direction of the multi-award-winning conductor, Paul Hillier. The Choir’s programmes span from early renaissance to the present day, incorporating established choral classics with cutting edge commissions, and a style of performance that incorporates versatility, dynamism and often vocal pyrotechnics.