Part of the Musica Viva concert series, this contemporary classical music performance on 24 and 25 March will respond to the arrival of the Mayflower passengers in modern-day Massachusetts in 1620.
It will will explore the Native American and European settler philosophies of land stewardship and land ownership, before going on to examine how colonisation has affected climate change and led to migration on a global basis.
In an unusual move for a classical music piece Robert Taub, the internationally-renowned concert pianist, has brought on two composers to work collaboratively on Some Call it Home. They are the internationally-recognised Jonathan Dawe and Jane O’Leary, who is a direct descendant of Mayflower passenger Richard Warren.
An ensemble of musicians from the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Grammy-nominated baritone Randall Scarlata and Grammy Award-winning soprano Deborah York will perform their original musical score.
The musical score will be complemented by a libretto and multi-media element, featuring archival material from the British Museum, photography and a video shot by a human smuggler in the Sahara Desert in 2017 that has never before been publicly exhibited.
Through its libretto, score, and visuals, Some Call it Home will reflect on moments in American and British history in which our relationship with land and Earth shifted, and feature historical quotes from 1620 to the present day.
With quotes from William Bradford, President Thomas Jefferson, President Andrew Jackson, Robert Oppenheimer and a human smuggler, Some Call it Home will explore:
Robert Taub, creator and director of Some Call it Home and music director at The Arts Institute, University of Plymouth, said: "I asked myself, what from 1620 is vitally relevant to us all today? I believe it’s our relationship to land, and the conflicts that began immediately upon the Mayflower’s arrival in the New World.
"The critical question is whether we care for the land, or claim it to use in any way that we see fit? I chose quotations from 1620 to the present for the libretto. O’Leary and Dawe’s music brings to life the drama inherent in the quotes and in the actions they portray, and the visual component - illustrations, photos, video - ties together a complete stage experience.
"I hope that the audience is moved and entertained, and that they leave with hopefulness of how we can all better look after planet Earth - our home - together."
Jane O’Leary, co-composer of Some Call it Home added: "Working on the music for Some Call it Home has had special resonance for me as a direct descendant of Richard Warren, a Mayflower passenger in 1620. I am very excited to visit Plymouth for the first time in March to see the place where the boat sailed from.
"It’s been a fascinating experience to collaborate with Robert and Jonathan on this project, bringing to life various scenes from the past 400 years as man continued to search for new homes – across the sea, across desserts, into space. Each scene brings a new perspective to the idea of ‘home’, with its own special musical atmosphere."
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