top of page

Evlana Presents Constellations: Concert 2

Works by Gráinne Mulvey, Elaine Agnew, Linda Buckley & Ian Wilson feature in this 2nd concert of Constellations

Friday 23rd April



Evlana was set up as a flexible sinfonietta sized orchestra in 2015 to showcase some of Ireland’s most accomplished performers and composers. “Constellations” highlights Irish chamber work over the last 40 years

Gráinne Mulvey (b. 1966) Sun of Orient Crimson with Excess of Light (11’) 2020

Elaine Agnew  (b. 1967 ) hhmmm… (5’) 2012

Linda Buckley (b. 1979)  Revelavit (10’) 2011

Ian Wilson (b. 1964) Cetiri Kamena  (4’) 2012

Sylvia O’Brien, soprano 

Nathan Sherman, Viola

Paul Roe, Clarinets

Isabelle O’Connell, Piano


Gráinne Mulvey Sun of Orient Crimson with Excess of Light

( Piano and Electronics)

“This piece for piano and electronics is one of a series of works inspired by the writings of the physicist and explorer John Tyndall (1820-93). Although remembered as a scientist, Tyndall was also a poet, inspired by his avid reading of Shelley, Keats, Byron, Wordsworth, Cowper, Campbell, Burns and, especially, Tennyson, Emerson and Goethe. His own forays into poetry writing started early in his career. The particular inspiration for this piece is a passage from Tyndall’s poem A Morning on Alp Lusgen, from the final section of his 1882 collection of essays and memoirs, New Fragments, evoking his sense of wonder at the majesty of the landscape; images of sheer, steep declines, the hot sun and lush vegetation.


The sun has cleared the peaks and quenched the flush

Of orient crimson with excess of light.

The tall grass quivers in the rhythmic air

Without a sound; yet each particular blade

Trembles in song, had we but ears to hear.

The hot rays smite us, but a quickening breeze

Keeps languor far away. Unslumbering,

The soul enlarged takes in the mighty scene.

The plummet from this height must sink afar

To reach yon rounded mounds which seem so small.

Musically, this suggested the idea of combining the conventionally played live piano against a range of sampled and treated “extended” piano sounds on tape, especially timbres obtained from inside the piano: plucked and muted strings, harmonics, bowed sounds…

The piece was written for Isabelle O’Connell, who has made a speciality of works for electronics and piano, and who premiered it March 2020, at the Finding A Voice Festival, in Clonmel. It is dedicated to Isabelle O’Connell with grateful thanks and appreciation.”

Elaine Agnew hhmmm…

Bass Clarinet

hhmmmmm… was commissioned by Concorde as part of their 2012 Up Close With Music series which celebrated 35 years of Concorde.  Scored for solo bass clarinet hhmmmm…was premiered by Paul Roe at the Contemporary Music Centre and subsequently performed by Paul at the Irish Cultural Centre in Paris, NUI Maynooth and the RIAM.   Consisting of two contrasting sections, the player is free to perform them in any order.

Linda Buckley revalavit

(Soprano and Electronics)

revelavit for voice and tape, composed for Michelle O’ Rourke, soprano

revelavit is inspired by medieval organum from the twelfth century, particularly the work of the French composer Leonin, and his Viderunt Omnes. The title 'revelavit' comes from the plainchant of the original Leonin text, to uncover or reveal.

Ian Wilson Cetiri Kamena

(Vla. Bass Clar, Piano)

"I have connections through marriage to the Balkan region, and had been exploring Irish sean-nós singing around the time of writing this piece (2010), so I decided to base the composition on a pre-existing Macedonian folk melody called 'Zaidi, zaidi'. I studied a performance of this tune (which means 'set down, set down' - the singer asks the sun to set) by acclaimed singer Toše Proeski – the ornamentation and performance style are very different from Irish singing but nonetheless I attempted the kind of re-contextualization of that musical dialect that I had been doing with sean-nós.

‘Četiri kamena’ is Serbian for ‘four stones’, relating to a true story involving honouring the unmarked grave of an infant with a marker of four stones – the song’s lamenting nature reminded me of the tale."

bottom of page