Wednesday, August 3, 2022

"Breathe" - A Collaboration of Poetry and Percussion

Composer and tubist Hope Salmonson is a gifted artist whose music is inspired by community and her connection to others.  Also a Talent Trust scholarship recipient, Hope's works have been performed by many groups on several stages, including the Ensemble Allure, the andPlay Duo, and the Mount Allison Elliott Chorale.  She recently participated in the 2022 LAMP Composition Academy where composers were challenged to write for an ensemble and a randomly selected poem from Michelle Sylliboy's "Kiskajeyi - I AM READY".  Hope talks about her experience: 

"When I was informed that I received "Breathe" and percussion, it struck me funny—coincidental that an ensemble that doesn't use breath would be paired with this text. I decided to incorporate breath into the piece itself by making group breathing a core part of the tempo and metre. In sections of the work, the percussionists will not follow a set tempo, but they will 
guide the music as they inhale and exhale. This, to me, was the way to do justice to Sylliboy's words in this context.

Michelle Sylliboy's poem "Breathe" can be found in her full collection, "Kiskajeyi - I AM READY" at bookstores and online. I heartily encourage any listeners and players to engage with her work; while this poem was my primary inspiration, I developed my compositional ideas in conversation with the full text and Michelle herself; the collaborative spirit is key to my experience of this music.

Many thanks to the Nova Scotia Talent Trust and the Bragg Women Music Opportunities Fund for supporting my journey to creating this music."

For more about Hope and her music, please visit her website


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