Thursday 3 May 2012

Joyce, Kerouac and DeLillo into music

Endings is a new piece by Jeremy Peyton Jones which sets the final paragraphs of James Joyce's Ulysses, Jack Kerouac's On the Road and Don DeLillo's White Noise. Peyton Jones first set Molly Bloom's soliloquy from the end of Ulysses in 1998 and since then he has gone on to set the ends of various other novels.  Peyton Jones says that 'There is no connecting theme in the endings that I chose to set to music for this work except perhaps the idea of 'ending' itself. Don DeLillo at the end of his satirical tour de force White Noise brilliantly uses waiting in the supermarket queue as a metaphor for a powerful sense of our own mortality and fear of death.  Several of the settings are about our legacy and what we leave behind when we die.'

For this project, Endings, Peyton Jones is working with Electronic Sound Artist Kaffe Matthews to create a piece in one single over-arching structure based on the existing endings. The work will be played by Regular Music II, bringing together their vibrantly theatrical amplified acoustic sound (vocals, keyboards, strings, brass, electric guitar and percussion) with the noisy rhythms and abstract cyber landscapes of Matthews' electronic improvisations.
Kaffe Matthews performing live (credit Miyako Narita)

Also on the programme are Peyton Jones's large-scale work And The Days Are Long for electric guitar, live electronics and amplified ensemble, plus vocal settings of an extract from Pablo Neruda's epic poem Alturas de Macchu Picchu and vocal settings from recent music theatre productions, including Against Oblivion, using the words of writer David Gale, concerning loss, destruction and decay. Incidentally it was for Gale's wedding that Peyton Jones's Molly Bloom soliloquy was created.

Peyton Jones's current work includes a series of music theatre works entitled Against Oblivion, Part 1 of which was premiered at Toynbee Studios, London in March 2007, and Part 2 at the Tête á Tête Opera Festival Riverside Studios in July 2009.

Ashley Slater, Melanie Pappenheim and Rebecca Askew from Regular Music II performing Jeremy Peyton Jones's Against Oblivion Part 1 (credit Letizia Pettrucci)
You have three opportunities to catch the  Regular Music II playing Endings, Thursday 24 May at the De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, , Saturday 26 May at the Purcell Room in the South Bank Centre in London then on Thursday 31 May at the  Arnolfini in Bristol.

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