Original Creative Work
TURA New Music
Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) / Centre for Research in Entertainment, Arts, Technology, Education and Communications
Speechless is a 70 minute opera that is a homage to persons rendered speechless through political means.
In contemporary Australian culture, a number of cultural groups find themselves in positions of impotency, where they are left without a voice – legally, politically or culturally. Additionally, the populous is suffering compassion fatigue and often feels powerless to address larger philosophical issues. 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.
Using graphic notation and experimental vocal approaches, the work explores vocal techniques that owe more to electronic music than classical voice, engaging a 30 piece choir and the Australian Bass Orchestra formed from low strings, bass guitars, bass brass, bass drums and electronics.
The world premiere of Speechless was performed at VitalStatistix, Port Adelaide, South Australia from 28th-29th July, 2017.
CAT HOPE | composer
AARON WYATT | music director
Produced by TURA NEW MUSIC
Development partner VITALSTATISTIX
ALICE HUI‐SHENG CHANG
AVIVA ENDEAN | brass & woodwind
TINA HAVELOCK-STEVENS | percussion
STUART JAMES | electronics
TRISTEN PARR | strings
AUSTRALIAN BASS ORCHESTRA
BORN ON MONDAY | community choir
HOI POLLOI | singing group
ANNALISA OXENBURGH | producer
GUY SMITH | sound design
DAN THORPE | copyist
SALLY RICHARDSON | staging
DEBORAH MAY | documentation
SUE FENTY STUDHAM | stage manager
JENNY POH | deputy stage manager
JAZMINE HOPE SCUDERI | asst stage manager