last month in a nutshell

It has been a very busy four weeks since I last posted something.  Here are some highlights:

  • the first stage of the Infant Imaginings project drew to a close.  Helene Hugel and I have been working on a number of fifteen-minute pieces for babies (between three and twenty-four months) over the past while and we presented them last week in Tallaght Community Arts Centre and in a health clinic.  All being well (i.e. if the funding comes through!) we’ll be developing our work further in the second half of next year.
  • I met a singer-songwriter who I really enjoyed – Audrey Ryan, from Maine.  The first time was at a singer-songwriter night in The Stables in Mullingar where I was playing with Hamlet.  It was Halloween, she played ‘The Monster Mash’ (it caught on in a flash, for your information).  Second time was at The Song Room the following week and she’d been up all night watching Obama win the election.
  • I did a schools project in Navan and wrote a lovely song for the kids to sing (which I’ll post soon).
  • New Dublin Voices did two concerts which featured the beautiful choral music of Jaakko Mäntyjärvi, a Finnish composer.  The choir sang one of his pieces last year, the exquisite Die Stimme des Kindes, and we reprised that and two of the works that helped make him one of the very best composers writing for mixed voice choirs today: Canticum Calamatatis Maritimae and Four Shakespeare Songs.  I urge you to download this stunning version of Die Stimme des Kindes performed by the all-male American choir, Chanticleer.
  • Hamlet played his Bewley’s theatre gig to a nicely-packed room backed by ‘The Handsome Strangers’ – me on keys/cajon/backing vocals, Barry Rycraft on double bass and Satya Darcy on drums.  There are some videos on Hamlet’s Facebook group, which you can join for updates on his musical adventures.  Next on the horizon is the recording this weekend of his debut EP…

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