In the last week of the residency, the looming deadline of a concert expectedly emerged into a much clearer perspective. Sketches needed to become pieces that could be presented to an audience and practiced to the point of proficiency. This combined with creating edits of videos and field recordings to utilise in my compositions, meant that I had to cut back on my discovering and focus on shaping my material for the concert. Michael, Noah and I decided that we would each perform some solo compositions as well as collaborating on some music. We were lucky to get all the equipment that we would need, generously provided by Eslöv Municipality, a week in advance so that we could test and rehearse everything the way we intended to perform it.
At the concert I performed a solo flute piece inspired by the avian soundscapes that I experienced around Harlösa, especially cuckcoo birds, and a solo guitar piece in open D tuning accompanied by my sunset video. I would consider both works to be “works in progress”, as the concert was billed, but they still took convincing forms and were well received by the audience. I will continue to develop them now that I am back in Ireland and premiere more developed versions at some point in the future.
My fellow residents performed pieces; Noah Fishman for mandolin and voice; Michael Futreal for his handmade dulcimer and bamboo flute. Our collaborative elements involved some digital manipulations and percusion parts on each others compositions and an arrangement of a Swedish traditional folk song to conclude the concert.
The crowd was much larger than the organisers were expecting, so much so that some people had to listen through the floor on the floor above. Our videos of the nature around the Avian kingdom projected onto the white plaster walls of the windmill created a good link between the two main inspirations of our time in Skåne.
We finished our stay with a feast with our fantastic hosts and residency organisers. I thoroughly enjoyed my time in the Avian Kingdom and am sure that my experiences there will continue to serve as inspiration for my compositions for a considerable time. The windmill in particular was a very inspiring location and one of the most interesting places that I have had the pleasure to perform. I would be keen to return to Hammarlunda and create a work specifically for and incorporating the windmill, especially as the team involved are working towards making it fully operational again. A music and dance film would be interesting because of all the attractive angles, moving parts and spacious second floor balcony.
Special thanks to everyone involved in the ARNA residency and the Arts Council of Ireland for making my participation in this residency possible.
Some pictures below..