All sorts of sonic experiments in the speaking or chanting of the choruses are not only permissible but to be encouraged. For instance, after a first straight hearing, the words can be fragmented into various patterns of repetition, cross-cutting, over-lapping, truncation and so on…. the choice of music is crucial. There should be music throughout the drama: introducing scenes, repeating themes, coming in and out of both dialogue and choruses.”

Paul Roche, on performing Euripides, 1998

Theodor W. Adorno once suggested that all artworks are “a message in a bottle”: pertaining, that is, to a content that cannot guarantee its arrival, reception or comprehension.  Likewise, any statement, as is now clear from our current culture of tweets or soundbites, is also a perilous undertaking, with the channels of communication neither allowing clear articulation of intention nor an unambiguous dissemination of message.  This is the starting point of ‘Aphorisms’, a new collaborative performance piece for singer, speakers, instrumentalists, movement and video, including staff, students and alumni from the Music and Fine Art courses at Anglia.  It explores language/speech/word/address within the context of these generating an abstract composition of sound/text and image.  Fragments of philosophical texts and poetry are segued, pitted against each other, and overlaid within a landscape of sonic experimentation. It includes texts by Margaret Atwood, Friedrich Nietzsche, Raymond Carver, Julia Kristeva, Walt Whitman, amongst many others.  These become, in several ways, a kind of interweave of archaic drama, a ‘primitive’ opera, a battle between meaning and sound, between sense and non-sense.  The piece in 3 parts: Part 1: ‘Beginnings’ Part 2: ‘Voices and Words’ Part 3, ‘Exodus’.


Aphorisms p4 - Full score
Aphorisms p 2 - Full score
Aphorisms p.5 - Full score
Aphorisms p 6a- Full score
Aphorisms p8 - Full score
Aphorisms p9 - Full score
Aphorisms p10 - Full score

PerformanceJune 13th  / 6.30 pm / Recital Hall, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge.

David Ryan, Bass Clarinet, Vibraphone, Direction

Cristina Grifone, Soprano

Kelcy Davenport, Speaker

Tilda Borrows, Speaker

Kevin Flanagan, Speaker, Clarinet

Pina Santoro, Speaker, Piano Accordion

William Crosby, Guitar

Joe Zeitlin, ‘Cello

Ian Mitchell, Clarinets

Dominic Lash, Double Bass

Caitlin Shek, Piano

Leo Oakley, Violin

Krisztian Hofstadter, Electronics, Sound Projection

Klara Lucznik, Movement

James Norton, Live Video

Justyna Latoch, Video, Photography

Thanks to – Sally Stenton, Pre-recorded Voice, Farah Mulla, Pre-recorded Sound, plus, Ryan Rodgers and Abi Pateman, Technical Support and Sound Projection.


Aphorisms is generously supported by the Anglia Ruskin University Arts Council.