2 Millennial Songs
For voice and piano
These two songs were written to be part of a programme on the themes of distance
and communication. The other songs in the programme coming from composers
who were writing before the advent of easy global communication, with the
exception of Benjamin Britten, and even he only had the telegram and the landline
These songs bring to the listener a few of the problems that have always plagued
the human social consciousness - loneliness and miscommunication – but
reimagines and reframes them through a modern viewpoint, allowing us to see
some of the similarities with our ancestors and also the ways in which
contemporary issues are compounded by technology.
The first song, Dirge, focusses on loneliness. The poem speaks of the interactions
that we have in the digital social world we all inhabit but recognises how hollow
these interactions can inherently be; although they mimic real life, the participants
are not receiving the true human connection that they think they are and are
somewhat tricking themselves through technology. The music focusses on creating
a methodically repetitive and throbbing sound that feel like its progressing, but
that, in reality, never goes anywhere merely continuing to trudge forward in ever
the same manner.
The second song, Writer’s Angst, focusses on the stress of miscommunication in a
world that is always on and expecting an answer. The text is of a character who
must reply but is unsure of how their words will be interpreted by the other party.
The pressure to be able to present yourself and your arguments with coherence in a
world that expects almost immediate response can be a stressful thing. Musically,
the song sits in an unbalanced, irritable, and uncertain domain, flitting from one
(musical) idea to another and never being certain of which route to take.
PREMIERED SUMMER 2021