Preparations for the development workshops of Speechless by Cat Hope have now officially begun in Adelaide.
Speechless, for the Australian Bass Orchestra, choir and four vocal soloists, is composed and directed by Cat Hope and produced by Tura New Music. The workshops are presented by Development Partner Vitalstatistix, though the 2017 Incubator Residency Program.
Speechless is an experimental opera homage to persons rendered speechless through political means.
Engaging a thirty-piece choir and an Orchestra formed from bass guitars, bass brass, bass drums and electronics, Speechless draws score and thematic material from the 2014 Human Rights Commission report entitled The Forgotten Children: National Inquiry into Children in Immigration Detention. The work is an abstract examination of how wordless music – vocal and instrumental – can empower text that is hidden or suppressed.
Featuring around 70 people on stage, Speechless includes soloists Kusum Normoyle, Alice Hui-Sheng Chang, Judith Dodsworth and Sage Pbbbt.
The Australian Bass Orchestra, with up to 30 players, is led by section leaders Tina Havelock Stevens (percussion), Tristen Parr (strings), Stuart James (electronics) and Aviva Endean (brass and wind).
Speechless is directed by Cat Hope, a composer and sound artist whose work explores bass noise, graphic notation and drone, who has created numerous soundscapes, songs and installations. She has also directed dance collaborations, short films and music videos.
There will be two free, public work-in-progress showings at Vitalstatistix in Adelaide, at 7pm on Friday 28th and Saturday 29th of July. RSVP on Eventbrite to the free workshop showings at the home of Vitalstatistix in Adelaide here.
Cat Hope is also keeping a blog about the development.