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German Premiere of Tansy Davies's The rule is love

Oct. 01, 2020

German Premiere of Tansy Davies's <em>The rule is love</em>

On October 16, Donaueschinger Musiktage presents the German premiere of Tansy Davies's The rule is love, sung by Elaine Mitchener, with the ensemble Manufaktur für aktuelle Musik, as part of a concert titled "On Being Human as Praxis". The organizers explain:

"On Being Human as Praxis is taken from the title of a critical genealogy of works of Jamaican feminist writer and cultural theorist Sylvia Wynter and edited by Katherine McKittrick. Inspired by Wynter’s insights on how race, location, and time together inform what it means to be human, vocal-movement artist Elaine Mitchener has invited five composers to creatively respond to Wynter’s startling reconceptualization of the human and her attempts to rehistoricize humanness as praxis. For this journey Mitchener’s long-term collaborator, Vietnamese American choreographer Dam Van Huynh, will direct her with members of his dance company and the ensemble Manufaktur für aktuelle Musik."

Tansy Davies's The rule is love was premiered by Elaine Mitchener and the London Sinfonietta (who co-commissioned the work with the Donaueschinger Musiktage), led by Richard Baker, last season. Davies generated material for the piece using numbers from sacred geometry – inspired by the writings of Plato and harmonious forms from nature – while texts by John Berger and Sylvia Wynter provide contemporary undercurrents. "The piece is very much about rhythm" says Davies. "The voice begins as a drum; a percussive utterance. Elaine will play drum kit and the vocal part emerges as another layer of her drum pattern. Rhythms and patterns cycle and circle around each other in ever-changing internal relationships."

Listen to Tansy Davies's salt box (2005):

(Excerpt from salt box/Tansy Davies/Azalea Ensemble/Christopher Austin, conductor)

To learn more about Tansy Davies, visit:

Tansy Davies
The rule is love (2019)
a song cycle for contralto and chamber ensemble
texts by John Berger and Sylvia Wynter (Eng)
ssax.bcl - perc(1-2*): vib/snare drum/tom-tom/drum kit(hi-hat/susp.cym/snare drum/tom-tom/BD)-vn.db *1 player needed if singer also plays drum kit