a chamber opera
Taken from the Irish language, the word rinn roughly translates as loop. It is a circular landform with a central viewpoint or headland that allows one to see the entire circle/ring in question. The opera is based around a short play, devised by dramaturg Hans-Peter Jahn, taking fragments of text from The Sirens chapter of Ulysses. This play is repeated four times in the opera, and with each re-enactment the four singers rotate to become a new character within the play. By the end of the fourth re-enactment, each singer has lived every line and become every character of the play, each bringing something different and more revealing to every line and character as it is repeatedly re-lived. The idea is inspired by how Joyce uses imagery patterns in Ulysses to create a type of multidimensional perception for the reader. A large part of the staging of rinn involves a multichannel sonic sculpture that the singers wear, interact with, and are amplified by.
rinn was commissioned by the biannual Taschenopernfestival – Pocket Opera Festival, which took place in Salzburg from 16th to 29th September 2015. Since 2005, Taschenopernfestival have paired four composer/director teams to create an evening of new chamber operas. The first two pages of Episode 11 of “Ulysses” by James Joyce were the thematic focus for the 2015 Pocket Opera Festival. This section serves as an overture to the episode, which Joyce himself named “Sirens” in analogy to Homer’s Odyssey.
Some pictures from the 2015 production at ARGEkultur Salzburg, taken by Johannes Amersdorfer:
Directed by Thierry Bruehl, Dramaturgy from Hans-Peter Jahn,
Singers/Actors: Annika Boos, Soetkin Elbers, Klaus-Nicola Holderbaum, Constanze Passin, Philine Passin
österreichisches ensemble für neue musik, conducted by Juan Garcia Rodriques
Developed with the aid of an Opera Project Award from The Arts Council of Ireland
Video coming soon…