This unique happening involved three consecutive events, linked by the theme of memories – those of loved ones now no longer here with us.
In Voice(s), soprano Juliet Fraser gave a committed solo rendition of four works which combined live performance with pre-recorded or computer-manipulated sounds. Despite her stalwart efforts, the material to hand did make this appear the least memorable part of the experience overall.
Celestial, a collage of songs, words, soundscapes and film by Paul K Joyce, was, of course, on a completely different musical plane – an exceedingly melodious and attractive score very much couched in the music-theatre genre, and which Ten Tors Chamber Orchestra, under Simon Ible’s sympathetic direction, brought to life so vividly and with such polished precision. Here the telling contributions from vocalists Sarah Simmonds, Helen Porter and Billy Bottle did much to heighten the success of the performance even more.
But for all the sheer correctness and professional slickness of Celestial, it was ultimately Katy Richardson’s Relic – a fascinating amalgam of film, slides, voice, live music and sounds – that made the most lasting impression, especially tugging at the heartstrings of anyone who could readily relate to the time period involved. The highly-engaging, yet often basic, sometimes even primitive musical score, written and performed by The Imperfect Orchestra, paradoxically both complemented and enhanced the visual aspect so perfectly throughout.
PHILIP R BUTTALL