Films, Audio & Samples
The Vision Symphony (Docume...Embedded video
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Vision Symphony RTE News Re...Embedded video
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This symphony was created to enable blind and vision-impaired musicians to perform with an orchestra. It is written in such a way that it can be memorised by learning through specially created audio files. There are also aural cues written into the music that assist with ensemble playing. The piece is meant to be played by sighted musicians alongside blind and vision-impaired musicians, all as equals within an orchestra.
The piece is in four movements, each dedicated to a different blind musician from County Clare in Ireland – Allegro, Adagio, Scherzo and Passacaglia (a baroque form with a repeating bass). The music itself is concurrently classical, traditional and contemporary. Newly-made reels and jigs mix with Baroque sequences, electronic dance music, South Indian percussion, Congolese guitar, minimalist pulsations and mystical airs. The music is by turns joyous, hypnotic, mournful, dramatic and, by the end, life-affirming.
With The Vision Symphony I'm trying to regain something that is almost lost in modern orchestral music, a sense of real connection to everyday people. All the great symphonists connected with their audience, their work reflected their times.
This piece connects in a new way, giving opportunities for musicians who are usually excluded from orchestras to perform a symphony.
Commissioned by Clare Arts Office with funds from the Arts Council of Ireland's Invitation to Collaboration Scheme