Arachne

 

A music theatre work for 3 singers and ensemble
2016

 

Duration
20 min.

 

The composition is originally a staged music theatre piece. The piece can however also be performed as
a concert version without the staging.

 

Instrumentation
2 sopr, mezzo, bcl, tbn, perc, elguit, vlc

 

Premiered by
Annami Hylkilä (sopr), Meeri Pulakka (sopr), Ylva Gruen (mezzo), Fatima Boix (bcl), Max Silfverberg (trnb), Petteri Kippo (perc), Jukka Kääriäinen (elguit), Marina Vidal (vlc)
May 20 2016
Schauman Hall
Pietarsaari, Finland

The performance is based on a Greek myth of a girl Arachne who is competing in woven art with the goddess Athena. Arachne wins the competition and at the same time insults the gods by weaving a picture of their faults. Arachne is punished for her arrogance and turned into a spider. The Tower of Babel, The Wings of Icarus and Arachne’s weave are myths where humans will not abide or stay within the limits of the accepted and eventually will be punished.

The three myths are intertwined with the cotton industry and its development during the industrial revolution as all of these examples take us to the eternal theme of the human tendency to surpass the limits. While the vengeful gods of the Olympos are far away from today’s world, the overconsumption and limitless exploiting of natural resources by humans is a hubris that already has costly results.

Industrialization is vividly present in the music’s sonic surface and instrumentation as its sound-world consists of extremely noisy and metallic sonorities. Mechanic loops are mixed with amplified sounds of the loom, creating a factory-like atmosphere. Another source of inspiration is the literal spider web, spiders and everything related to them; fear and fragility, elasticity, predation, traps, liberation and safety. The different types of texture in the music are a reflection of all of the previous.

Past Performances

May 22 2016
Annami Hylkilä (sopr), Meeri Pulakka (sopr), Ylva Gruen (mezzo), Fatima Boix (bcl), Max Silfverberg (trnb), Petteri Kippo (perc), Jukka Kääriäinen (elguit), Marina Vidal (vlc)
Schauman Hall
Pietarsaari, Finland

May 20 2016
Annami Hylkilä (sopr), Meeri Pulakka (sopr), Ylva Gruen (mezzo), Fatima Boix (bcl), Max Silfverberg (trnb), Petteri Kippo (perc), Jukka Kääriäinen (elguit), Marina Vidal (vlc)
Schauman Hall
Pietarsaari, Finland

Sheet Music

Sheet Music
Music Finland
Sheet Music Library
musiclibrary@musicfinland.fi

Listen

Arachne, for 3 singers and ensemble:

Excerpt from Arachne: