Posts Tagged ‘british composer’

Author: Ben Kaye - Librettist, Co-founder
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October 26th 2013
“Mein Name ist Anya” – Anya17 highlights Human Trafficking in Deutsche Zeitung and is invited to “go national” across Romania

We couldn’t be more delighted that the Romanian premiere of Anya17 prompted a fact-based report on Human Trafficking in Deutsche Zeitung (Romanian Edition).

Following the performance, the President of Pro Prieyenia Arad (a partner in the performance) received a call from the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Bucharest, inviting Pro Prieyenia Arad and The Friendship Foundation (UK – Romania) to go national with both the Anti-Trafficking Symposium and Anya17! We couldn’t possibly have hoped for a better result!

On that note, it was also wonderful to hear about individual audience experiences of Anya17. The following is typical:

“The standing ovation, which followed what seems like minutes of ‘gob-smacked’ silence, indicated the general audience response. A senior police office from South Africa declared to me the following day that the opera had changed the direction of his vocation.”

Let’s all keep our fingers crossed and hope that in addition to Romania, Germany (Nov 28th), San Francisco (next year) that Anya17 continues to raise awareness of the horrors of Human Trafficking.

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Author: Ben Kaye - Librettist, Co-founder
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December 6th 2011
Anya17: Exclusive behind the scenes footage

The recent Anya17 auditions at the RNCM were universally of such a high standard that it made the selection process almost impossible. To give you a taste of the range of impressive talent at the RNCM, I thought it worth posting some ‘behind the scenes’ un-edited Documentary footage.

This clip (courtesy of Shilton Photo Film) features one audition for the role of Natalia, whose highly unusual and disturbing aria, almost a ‘Broadway parody’ juxtaposes the contemporary / classical nature of the rest of the Opera. The astoundingly talented Frances Marshfield gave an unforgettable performance which left the panel almost lost for words.

This melodic, upbeat composition is also in shocking contrast with its lyrical content, which relates Natalia’s cruel introduction to the world of  sexual exploitation.

Please note that this performance contains subject matter which some viewers may find disturbing.

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Author: Hayley Chappell - Online Marketer
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December 2nd 2011
Anya17: The Cast

Following the recent auditions for Anya 17 we are pleased to announce the following cast and production team.

Anya                                Andrea Tweedale
Mila                                  Joanne Holton
Natalia/Carole               Lucy Baines
Elena                               Amy Webber
Gabriel/Uri                     Sean Boyes
Viktor                             Thomas Hopkinson

Conductor: Clark Rundell
Director: Caroline Clegg

Première performance in Liverpool on Wednesday 7 March 2012. Further performance at RNCM in Manchester on Friday 9 March 2012.

The audition panel wish to congratulate all who auditioned for the high standard of preparation and presentation.

If you would like more information about the roles in Anya 17, visit our cast page.

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Author: Adam Gorb - Composer, Co-founder
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September 28th 2011
Anya17 – A Composer’s Perspective

Ben Kaye and I had worked on two previous projects, both related to present day world issues: ‘Thoughts Scribbled on A Blank Wall’ (2007), a cantata based on the incarceration of the political prisoner John McCarthy, and ‘Eternal Voices’ (2010), an oratorio on the subject of war in the 21st century with particular reference to the conflict in Afghanistan! I had wanted to write an opera for years, so when (at last) I had found a librettist in Ben Kaye who I could really work with, we spent many hours, telephone calls, meetings and emails mulling over subject matter.  Having thought very hard on whether to find a story from ancient or tried and tested sources, we eventually concluded that we would follow what had worked for us before: to take an important issue from today’s news and bring it to people’s attention through words and music. The dark and distressing area of human trafficking seemed a worthy challenge.

The genesis of this project literally took years. I have a full time job at a music college, and previously I had always composed mainly at weekends and in the holidays. But to create a one hour-long opera, this would need more time than I have ever taken previously on a work. After several failed applications for time off from work to research organisations, I was eventually granted a term where I could farm out my teaching and examining, thus leaving several hours a day for composing. I had already written a short ensemble piece ‘Dancing in the Ghetto’, which had had a couple of performances. This work has an Eastern European flavour which seemed to include a flavour of the highly charged atmosphere in which the story of the opera was to take place: in short, it was comforting to have a score with useful source material from where to start, rather than an intimidating blank page!

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Author: Ben Kaye - Librettist, Co-founder
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September 5th 2011

A blog.

A blank page.

A ream to fill with feeling.

Sitting down to find a prompt to start this story with the coldest of engines, I recalled an interview when a reporter asked me why I write.

“Until the pain dulls.

Until I can fall asleep without a million thoughts and images banging on my heart.

Until the catharsis no longer helps.

Until the chaos becomes silence.”

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