“Canções Profundas (Deep Songs)” is a new evening-length work by Seattle composer Steve Peters. Inspired by research into his family history in the Azores, this evocative sonic poem explores themes of migration, diaspora, memory, identity and emotional/cultural ties to place.
- From Wayward Music Seattle
Field Recordings and Ambient Sounds from the Azores, recorded by Steve Peters; instrumental music composed by Steve Peters
Lesli Dalaba, trumpet
Beth Fleenor, clarinets
Paul Kikuchi, percussion
Naomi Siegel, trombone
Greg Sinibaldi, saxophone
Joshua Parmenter, additional electronic processing
Rafael Carvalho, viola da terra (Azorean guitar), recorded.
The music was played in the dark.
previous post. (After the performance, Steve Peters answered another audience member’s inquiry about it, that it was the call of the Cory’s shearwater, common in the Azores. He said the first time he heard it, at night, it scared the #:@!! out of him.)
Crickets and barnyard animal sounds provided a brief, overlapped interlude, leading to a sudden quiet and then the tolling of a bell. Now the music entered the world of human sounds; at first chanting and bells in church, then an electronic fantasy of modulating bell-tones and – eventually – recognizable brass bands. The latter met and mingled in an Ivesian cross-jumble, though the music they were playing was clearly from a European tradition. During this, an aspect of the performance came to fore: in the dark, we could see shadows of the players moving, but not exactly what they are doing or what sounds were linked with their movements. Paul Kikuchi was on the stage with percussion – a large gong hung behind him like a dim sun in space, and a shadowy bass drum sat to his right – he moved around and between them and appeared to be playing, but it was far from obvious exactly what parts of the ambience came from him (except for a loud gong roll during the most abstract section). This added a definite sense of mystery…