LCMF 2019

15 December: On Doubling & Transformation
Ambika P3

Claire Goldsmark and the LCMF Orchestra, conducted by Jack Sheen, performing Burrows & Fargion’s Let us stop this mad rush towards the end. Image: Dawid Laskwoski

CA Conrad
Selected poems

Gabriella Hirst
Interlude (2018)

Peter Tscherkassky
Outer Space (1999)

Angharad Davies
I ble’r aeth y gwrachod i gyd...? (Where did all the witches go...?) (2019)
(world premiere) (LCMF Orchestra commission)


Marianna Simnett
The Bird Game (2019)

CA Conrad
Selected poems

Burrows & Fargion
Let us stop this mad rush towards the end (2019)
(world premiere) (LCMF Orchestra commission)
(Watch on Vimeo )



LCMF Orchestra
Claire Godsmark choreography and dance (Burrows & Fargion)
Francesca Fargion piano and voice (Burrows & Fargion)
Jack Sheen conductor (Burrows & Fargion, Davies)
CA Conrad

To double is to create, to make mischief, to sow chaos and confusion, but also to transfigure and transcend.  

Tonight’s metamorphoses include two radical new commissions for the second season of the LCMF Orchestra. Burrows & Fargion – the internationally celebrated duo made up of choreographer Jonathan Burrows and composer Matteo Fargion – present their first ever orchestral work, Let us stop this mad rush towards the end (2019). The starting point was a statement from the concertina player Will Duke, describing how to savour the gap between two notes and hold off from the usual headlong tumble. The two artists invited dancer Claire Godsmark to trace and hold a moving pathway between a lone singer, Francesca Fargion, and the orchestra. 'What is heard is also seen and ears exchange places with eyes.'

The LCMF Orchestra, conducted by Jack Sheen, performing Angharad Davies’  I ble’r aeth y gwrachod i gyd...? (Where did all the witches go...?). Image: Dawid Laskowski

The origins of I ble’r aeth y gwrachod i gyd...? (Where did all the witches go...?) (2019) by acclaimed improviser Angharad Davies lie in several solo violin recordings that Davies made in January 2019 at lle celf Capel y Graig in Furnace, near Aberystwyth. In this former chapel the acoustic orchestrated her violin, making it bloom, split and mutate. Exploiting the echoing, hatching, splicing possibilities of a massed ensemble, Davies gets the orchestra – under the baton of Jack Sheen – to duet with this spectral recording, dialoguing with the dark.

Three shorts explore metamorphosis on screen. In Gabriella Hirst's Interlude an act of magic, of transubstantiation, from human to object, occurs before our eyes. In Peter Tscherkassky's Outer Space the footage from the opening scene of horror movie The Entity (1981) about a woman possessed is exploded into a thousand pieces, flickering and juddering into a new existence.

Marianna Simnett’s The Bird Game (film still), 2019. Courtesy the artist, FVU, the Rothschild Foundation and the Frans Hals Museum

Mixing dismembered parts of Sleeping Beauty and Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Marianna Simnett’s new film The Bird Game (2019) stars an animal guide: ‘a loquacious and bloodthirsty crow lures six children to a secluded mansion and snares them in a sequence of deranged games,’ writes Charlie Fox. ‘Crow may be a villain but she is also an enchantress, a masterful storyteller and, in her climactic retelling of how she became a bird, a strange and scarred kind of heroine.’

CA Conrad reading poems at LCMF 2019

Woven through the night are the poems of CA Conrad, shot through with fire, wit, wisdom and tragedy, as well as a selection of Conrad’s ritualistic (Soma)tic Poetry Exercises. 'Soma' means 'to press and be newly born' and also describes an Indo-Iranian drink made from crushing psychedelic plants. 'The rituals are what most distinguish Conrad’s work,' wrote The Paris Review. 'Whether they entail blowing bubbles, inspecting parking-lot trees, or interviewing Philadelphia businessmen about the consistency of their semen, they are not just processes – they are part of the poems themselves.

Transcendental transformations to end: we turn to one of the most modest and authentic voices of New Age music, Laraaji, and his healing clouds of sound. Laraaji’s seminal album Ambient 3: Day Of Radiance combined the conceptual tropes of Brian Eno’s ambient music with his own Eastern mysticism, resulting in hallucinogenic and exuberant live performances.